Reds play out scoreless stalemate with Victory in season opener
Adelaide United had to weather a Melbourne Victory storm on their way to drawing 0-0 at AAMI Park on Sunday in their Westfield W-League 2018/19 season opener.
However, despite the Reds needing to remain resolute defensively, they also created chances of their own – particularly on the break – and could have easily snatched a late winner.
The Reds now have a few weeks to continue to gel on the training track and return to action on 18 November against Brisbane Roar, following a Round 2 bye and international break.
Head Coach, Ivan Karlović, named a strong line-up for the Reds’ season opener with all four imports included in the starting XI. Amber Brooks partnered Emma Checker in the heart of defence, while Veronica Latsko featured on the right wing.
In midfield, Gunnhildur Jónsdóttir and Dylan Holmes screened the back-four while Fanndís Fridriksdóttir was deployed on the left wing with Michelle Heyman leading the line.
The Reds began on the back foot, having to absorb a lot of Victory pressure as they dominated possession in the opening 20 minutes.
Victory missed a golden opportunity to hit the front after Emily Gielnik’s inch-perfect cross was headed wide by a diving Melina Ayres.
Fridriksdóttir then had a succession of chances on the break and came close to scoring against the run of play.
The Icelandic international’s best opportunity arriving on a relatively tight angle when her left-footed strike was tipped over by goalkeeper Casey Dumont.
The hosts started the second-half with more of the momentum and Christine Nairn nearly broke the deadlock when her snap shot whistling just over the bar.
In the 72nd minute, United were indebted to shot-stopper, Sarah Willacy, who pulled off a stunning save to deny Natasha Dowie’s one-on-one effort.
Another opportunity went begging for Melbourne soon after as Melinda Barbieri’s deflected shot hit the inside of the post but fell to Willacy.
Adelaide then had two fabulous attempts of their own and could have stolen all three points.
Heyman’s squared pass for substitute Chelsie Dawber was skied over the bar after taking an unkind bounce, before Heyman herself met Emily Condon’s cross though she could not muster enough power to beat Dumont.
15’ | Ayres flashes her diving header off-target for the hosts after meeting Gielnik’s cross.
33’ | Fridriksdóttir surges forward before shooting at goal with Dumont making a fingertip save.
72’ | Willacy is quick off her line to close the space for Dowie and smothers her shot before grasping the ball at the second attempt.
80’ | Dawber is unable to keep her close-range finish down following a beautifully squared pass across the face of goal from Heyman.
Sunday, 28 October 2018
Westfield W-League 2018/19 – Round 1
Melbourne Victory 0
Adelaide United 0
Venue: AAMI Park