Adelaide United Youth experienced a heartbreaking 1-0 loss after conceding a last-gasp penalty against National Premier League leaders Campbelltown City at Steve Woodcock Sports Centre on Saturday.
It was a dramatic ending to an action packed second-half with United seconds away from holding the ladder leaders to a stalemate in Round 18.
But Iain Fyfe converted a stoppage time penalty after the referee pointed to the spot for a shove on a Campbelltown player in the box.
Unfortunately, gloveman, Isaac Richards’ brilliance in goal was rendered futile – even if he did keep the Young Reds in the match for as long as he could.
The shot-stopper has strung a number of impressing outings together this season and his performance against the Red Devils was no exception – pulling off a catalogue of saves.
In fact, he was undoubtedly the best player on the park, as the understrength United side had to survive a barrage of attacks after half-time.
It was a relatively even start to the game from both sides with chances few and far between.
That was until Richards executed the first of many saves in the 14th minute when he produced a double save to deny Anthony Ture from close range.
Adelaide would finish the stronger of the two sides before the break, but they could not take advantage of any of the opportunities they created.
However, while Paul Pezos’ side finished on top heading into the sheds, Campbelltown responded and came out all guns blazing following the re-start.
Richards was forced into repelling three glorious chances, first sticking a leg out to deny Marc Marino’s one-on-one effort then turning Anthony Hartnell’s curling strike around the post and holding Ture’s angled hit.
But Richards saved his most spectacular stop for when he instinctively parried away substitute Brandon Centofanti’s volley.
Though Richards’ bid for a clean sheet went up in smoke, following a foul inside the area which allowed Fyfe to step up and net the winner.
The Young Reds will look to bounce back against Adelaide Olympic at the Valo Football Centre this Saturday night.
14’ | Richards produces two saves in quick succession, preventing Ture from openenign the scoring.
32’ | Charlie Devereux fires a left-footed volley from the edge of the box just wide of the target.
38’ | Carlo Armiento controls a high ball and on the turn shoots but goalkeeper Nick Harpas is equal to it.
49’ | Marino, through on goal, has his finished saved by the outstretched leg of Richards.
52’ | At full extension, Richards leaps into the top right corner to pluck Hartnell’s shot from breaking the deadlock.
67’ | Richards tips over Fyfe’s header from a corner.
78’ | Richards makes a jaw-dropping reflex save to keep out Centofanti’s sweetly-timed volleyed.
85’ | Dion Kirk cuts inside onto his left foot and bends his shot which hits the crossbar.
90’ | The referee has no hesitation of pointing to the spot following a foul by Franz Pjetri.
90’ | GOAL: Fyfe makes no mistake from the spot and buries the penalty.
Campbelltown City 0
Adelaide United 0