Adelaide United secured a 1-2 win over Croydon Kings, in Round 9 of the PlayStation4 National Premier Leagues at Polonia Reserve on Saturday.
Adelaide United have triumphed to four games unbeaten, following the victory over Croydon Kings, which also sees them jump to eighth position on the league standings with ten points.
A converted penalty by Ryan Strain grabbed an early lead for the visitors, while Kings’ Captain, Luke Klimek struck an equaliser in the second half
It was a touch in by Jordan Maricic, connecting off of a flick from Apostolos Stamatelopoulos, which then found the back of the net following a corner that sealed the deal for the Reds’ second win in a row.
The home side got off to a promising start with plenty of the possession, but it didn’t take long for Adelaide to start asking questions of the Kings’ defence.
In the 7th minute, the Reds shocked the crowd to gain an early advantage, when Paul Radice committed a foul in the penalty area.
Strain stepped up to the task, with a well-taken spot-kick, sending Croydon ‘keeper, Costa Zacharopoulos the wrong way.
Ten minutes after, Strain sent a lovely ball into the box for Stamatelopoulos to attempt a free header, but his effort was off target.
The McCabe brothers then linked-up perfectly, but Hamish’s shot was sent wide off the mark.
Croydon couldn’t seem to find an opening, but a promising attack which ended in a Radice volley looked sure to being the equaliser for the hosts, but Reds’ gloveman, Isaac Richards stood firm.
Adrian D’Alfonso had a few chances of his own, but was unable to rattle Richards.
Blake Carpenter lifted from the midfield and sent a venomous strike that forced a punching save from Zacharopoulos.
In the 40th minute, an open goal was left free for Strain to double the advantage before half time, but he couldn’t get enough connection onto his hit.
Five minutes in to the second half, Klimek equalised with a tap-in past Richards.
Only three minutes following the leveller, Adelaide answered back in the best way possible, gaining the lead once again. Carpenter delivered his corner kick to Stamatelopoulos, who flicked it towards Maricic who got a smooth touch onto it, beating a helpless Zacharopoulos.
Croydon looked more of a threat in the second, not wanting to pull away from the game.
Croydon Kings Head Coach, Mark Brazzale looked to his bench for some inspiration, bringing on Rocky Visconte who proved dangerous. Visconte headed the ball from close range towards goal, but Richards was able to punch the threat away.
Carpenter then looked for a goal of his own, making a run to the edge of the box, but skied his effort over the crossbar.
In the dying minutes of the match, Croydon were awarded with a free kick, leaving everyone on the edge of their seats.
James Skeffington thumped a solid strike towards the top-left corner of the goal, but Richards leaped up with a diving save, ultimately winning the game for the Reds.
Man of the Match, Blake Carpenter said the result was well deserved of Adelaide United and they are continuing to improve.
“It was a great result for us today, and well deserved,” he said.
“We are a young side, our fitness levels are tremendous and form over the last few games has been unreal and I think that today it has definitely improved.
“We were able to stay compact and stick to our game plan.
“When Croydon had possession we were compact to our formation, and that is the way we want to play, our transition was phenomenal again today.
“It really showed what we are made of, and how good we are today.
“Huss (Skenderovic) at half time, said to remain compact and transition when we didn’t have the ball, which I think we did that in the end.
“You really have to do something special to get through these tough games, and I believe I played my part throughout the 90 minutes to get the three points.
Reiterating on their recent trip to Spain, Carpenter said they have used their experience to their advantage in recent matches.
“It showed us how good players are over there, and I think we have definitely brought over our experience from the trip into the league.
“We were in really good form over there, and it was a great experience, and to take it back here has been good.
“It wasn’t a very good start to the NPL season for us, but we kept our heads high every game and the results are coming now which is good.
“Against West Adelaide, we just clicked and from there we kept the same team and changed our formation, so we have just gelled together well.”
In Round 10, Adelaide United host West Torrens Birkalla at The Parks Football Centre, while Croydon Kings will want to get a win when they face Adelaide Blue Eagles.
Adelaide United- 0
Croydon Kings- 1