Reds grind out stalemate with Jets

Adelaide United FC has extended its unbeaten run to four matches in a tense scoreless draw with the Newcastle Jets at Hindmarsh Stadium.

Adelaide United FC has extended its unbeaten run to four matches in a tense scoreless draw with the Newcastle Jets at Hindmarsh Stadium.

In a game that was certainly not for the football purists, the Reds were made to show their resolve at home after defender Nigel Boogaard received his second caution and subsequent red card in the 65th minute to make what had already been a real struggle even more so in the closing stages.

But while the performance may have been a backward step on the Reds- last three games, there were positives in that United secured just their second clean sheet of the season and have now gone four games without defeat.

Captain Jon McKain turned in arguably his best game for the club, while Iain Ramsay was again a spark on the left hand side and strike Bruce Djite had an absorbing battle all night with Newcastle-s central defensive pairing Nikolai Topor-Stanley and Tiago Calvano.

Reds Coach Rini Coolen acknowledged his team was below par tonight but at the same time credited their effort in playing a large period of the second half with one less player on the pitch.

“We prefer to play better football than we did today…we didn-t play well, that-s for sure,” Coolen said.

“I think the second half we came out a little bit better, we controlled the game a little bit more - not fantastic but good enough to be back in the game, and then there-s the red card for Boogaard and that-s hard.”

“What you need then is a great effort from the boys and even with ten players, we created a few more chances than our opponent, but we definitely do not deserve more than a draw.”

“It was not a fantastic game from either team, but in the end you-re happy with a point if you have to play 30 minutes with ten players.”

High pressing and intense pressure from the Jets had the Reds pegged back in their own half for much of a largely forgettable first 45 minutes.

The only shot on target for the half came from the boot of Newcastle sharp shooter Jeremy Brockie with just minutes remaining before the break, but it was well dealt with by Eugene Galekovic.

Newcastle-s suffocating tactics created a few hair-raising moments for United in the opening ten minutes which tested the home side-s composure and mettle at the back.

In the 20th minute some strong body work from Djite had Topor-Stanley beaten as he chased down a searching McKain ball, but the Jets defence managed to get back in time and block the striker-s left footed effort.

Ramsay then over hit a cross to an unmarked Zenon Caravella at the far post as the Reds- best attacks came on the counter.

The game dearly needed an injection of intensity after the break and it got it when Ramsay had the best chance of the match in the 50th minute.

A perfectly timed Francisco Usucar tackle robbed the Jets of the ball in midfield giving Djite the chance to slot a through ball in for Ramsay who had Jets keeper Matthew Nash beaten. But just when an open goal beckoned, the heaviness of Ramsay-s touch to get past Nash allowed time for Tarek Elrich to scamper back and block the United winger-s shot on the goal line.

A lower back problem to Dario Vidosic provided Ricardo Da Silva with a chance to prove his worth in his first appearance at Hindmarsh with over 35 minutes to go.

With the tempo of the game lifting, McKain came close as he sent a header just wide from a Ramsay free kick on the hour mark before the dynamics of the game turned in the Jets- favour when Boogaard was sent off for dissent.

But the Reds stood tall and on a night where chances were few and far between, it seemed destined that the points would be shared.

The final whistle confirmed the stalemate but it was not before both sides survived some late drama when Newcastle had claims for a penalty turned down and then the home fans thought substitute Fabian Barbiero had snatched a winner only to be correctly adjudged offside.

Coolen is hopeful of having Sergio van Dijk and Evgeniy Levchenko back to face the Central Coast Mariners at Hindmarsh next Friday night, while Mark Birighitti and Daniel Mullen will be available after returning from Qantas Under 23s duty.

Match Details Adelaide United FC 0 Newcastle Jets 0 Referee: Matthew Gillett Crowd: 8,403 @ Hindmarsh Stadium

Adelaide United line-up: 1.Eugene Galekovic (gk), 3.Nigel Boogaard, 4.Jon McKain (c), 7.Zenon Caravella (18.Fabian Barbiero 83-), 10.Dario Vidosic (13.Ricardo Da Silva 53-), 11.Bruce Djite, 14.Cameron Watson, 16.Spase Dilevski (2.Osama Malik 68-), 17.Iain Ramsay, 21.Francisco Uusucar, 22.Milan Susak

Substitutes not used: 39.Nick Munro (gk) Yellow Cards: Usucar 30-, Boogaard 33-/65-, Caravella 59-, Djite 90- Red Cards: Boogaard 65-

Newcastle Jets line-up: 19.Matthew Nash (gk), 4.Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 5.Tiago Calvano, 7.Kasey Wehrman, 8.Jeremy Brockie (25.Jacob Pepper 87-), 10.Ruben Zadkovich, 11.Tarek Elrich, 12.Jobe Wheelhouse (c), 13.Sung-Hwan Byun, 23.Ryan Griffiths, 24.Francis Jeffers (14.Labinot Haliti 74-)

Substitutes not used: 2.Taylor Regan, 30.Jack Duncan (gk) Yellow Cards: Topor-Stanley 56-, Griffiths 70-, Calvano 90+1- Red Cards: Nil