Adelaide United Youth played out a 1-1 draw with South Adelaide after Carlo Armiento’s penalty cancelled out an early opener from the hosts at O’Sullivan Beach Sports Complex on Saturday.
Armiento successfully buried his spot-kick approaching the interval to ensure parity as the Young Reds fell behind inside the opening 10 minutes through David Thornton.
South started the brighter of the two sides in the Round 17 fixture and were rewarded when United was unable to defend a long ball.
Thornton controlled the ball in the box and instinctively turned and unleashed his shot beyond goalkeeper Isaac Richards.
But despite conceding Adelaide went on the front foot and began to dictate the tempo of the match and had several attempts denied by the Panthers’ shot-stopper.
Kristos Stefanopoulos, on his Reds debut, was lively throughout the half, causing several problems for the South Adelaide full-backs on either flank.
Adelaide’s attacking intent and desire to draw level was realised following a shove on Blake Carpenter in the box on 39 minutes.
The referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot and Armiento stepped up and duly finished to bag his ninth goal of the campaign and first in four matches.
The Reds toiled in the second-half but could not find that vital second goal for the three points.
Armiento had a free-kick saved at the near post before the Panthers had two great chances to re-take the lead.
First, Richards performed a stunning save to deny a free header, while the follow-up attempt from one yard out strikes the crossbar where it appeared easier to score.
Almost 10 minutes later, Paul Pezos’ outfit hit the post as Stefanopoulos nearly capped off an incisive move.
Adelaide had a couple of decent opportunities in the final stages of the game but it finished all square.
The Reds remain in fifth spot on the National Premier League table and face Campbelltown City at Steve Woodcock Sports Centre this Saturday.
7’ | GOAL: Thornton breaks the deadlock with a clever strike on the turn which beats Richards all ends up.
39’ | PENALTY! Carpenter is fouled inside the area and a penalty awarded to the visitors.
40’ | GOAL! Armiento confidently slots the subsequent spot-kick, driving the ball low and hard into the bottom corner, leaving the 'keeper no chance.
58’ | Richards makes a sensational save to prevent South from grabbing the ascendency, before the follow-up effort fortuitously smacks the crossbar from extremely close range.
67’ | Stefanopoulos hits the woodwork in what would have completed a nice attacking move.
90’+2’ | Armiento’s free-kick is headed across the face of goal by Paul Wilson and into the path of Kusini Yengi but his header lands over the bar.
South Adelaide 2
Adelaide United 2