The Adelaide United Youth Team fell to Campbelltown City 2-0 in Round 21 of the National Premier League on Saturday.
It was a red hot clash between the two sides, as the Young Reds faced a strong side in Campbelltown. It was a great first 45 minutes for Adelaide United, and with their opponents down to ten men in the second half, it was not enough for the Reds to capitalise and secure three points. Instead, Campbelltown took their chances through Anthony Ture and Jake Monaco with expertly taken goals which lead them to a win.
The Red Devils started off the stronger of the two, as they continuously forced attack onto United’s defence and put them under pressure. But Jordan Maricic and Paul Wilson assisted in keeping their second-placed opponents goalless in the first half with interceptions that could have been costly.
After tumultuous attack from Campbelltown, Alec Maiolo gave his team some spark 15 minutes in as he cleared a dangerous ball to Ryan Strain, but his run was cut short as soon as it looked more promising. It was a fiery battle as both teams fought for possession, and minutes after, it was then Thomas Strain of Campbelltown with an attempt to attack, but ran the ball out of play.
Campbelltown were throwing men up forward, an attempted cross by Monaco was intercepted by Maricic and headed out of danger. Luigi Ditroia received the ball, but his shot flew over United keeper, Daniel Margush’s goals.
Dylan Smith and Maiolo had a promising chance, but Campbelltown’s defence proved too strong, with a second time, Maiolo was outnumbered by defenders. The game heated up as the first half’s end drew near, and with a close call, Adam Piscioneri’s attempted volley towards goal was not complete. A close call then came for the Reds, as Maiolo’s shot had gone wide, Strain picked the ball up but was just too late for his own chance as Campbelltown keeper, Nicholas Harpas claimed it before half time.
The possession in the second period started off evenly matched, but it didn’t take long for Campbelltown to capitalise on their chances. After a Margush save that went out for a corner, Ture claimed ball and found the back of the net in the 53rd minute. The Reds were then caught off guard when Monaco furthered Campbelltown’s lead to 2-0 minutes after.
The Young Reds did not give up the fight, and with a promising pass, Smith was almost through on goal, but a defensive block stopped the attack. Ture then looked to produce a brace, with two very close chances in the 70th minute mark. A last chance for United came through Blake Carpenter to expertly find space but Apostolos Stamatelopoulos was unable to get any power off his shot.
Following the match, United Youth Team Head Coach, Mark Jones, was frustrated with the loss as his team played well, but chances weren’t taken as it could have seen the Reds cause an upset over the home side.
“It was a fantastic first half and even an excellent first 10-15 minutes in the second half,” Jones said. “But we didn’t take our chances, and it was frustrating to watch.
“Some things didn’t go our way during the match, although that’s what happens in football, it was a game we could have won today.
“Campbelltown were defensively good, but when we are two yards away from goal and we don’t score it’s definitely frustrating.
“Coming down to the last week next week against Adelaide Olympic we’ll need to end our season with a win.”