Fair to say we were pretty fortunate to leave AAMI Park last night with a point, but that’s football. Sometimes the ball bounces your way, sometimes it doesn’t (and the officials don’t see it). You must give credit to Victory and their performance last night; they came from behind twice, were wrongly disallowed a third goal and bossed the second half.
Off the field Victory fans let themselves down once again with flares set off inside the ground even after the events of last week and the sanctions handed down to Western Sydney Wanderers and throwing bottles at keeper Thomas Sorensen is never acceptable and embarrassing for football fans around the world. Whilst I understand you get frustrated with referee decisions and might get caught up in the emotion of events, bottles should never be thrown onto the field. This is not exclusively Victory fans, City fans are guilty of this in the past with Fahid Ben Khalfallah being the victim last season at Etihad.
Now to the on field events and we cannot review the game without talking about the amazing talents of Uruguayan maestro Bruno Fornaroli. The striker was the sole reason City walked away with anything from last night and is a major driving point behind any title challenge that City impose. His first goal was sublime and his second was a well taken header to send the many City fans around the stadium out of their seats when City quickly retook the lead. Alex Wilkinson was solid, without being spectacular (but when is a centre back a standout) and looks a good fit for the club, especially with Hughes and Chapman on the sidelines.
As great as Fornaroli was last night, his usual partner in crime Harry Novillo went missing for the most part of the match. Thru clever tactics and great play Victory was able to subdue and involvement the usually flashy Frenchman would have in the game. Also disappointing was Socceroo Ivan Franjic. His early yellow card did him no favours as he had to walk a tightrope for the final 86 minutes but at the moment Franjic is far from the player who was brought to the club. Aaron Mooy improved on his previous two below par (by his lofty standards) performances and really seemed up for the derby clash.
Any derby at AAMI Park will always be a great experience and last night was not different, for the bulk of the evening the crowd were energetic and the game was once again a great advertisement for the game in this country.
City managed to hold on in the final 15 minutes after on loan midfielder (I don’t hear anyone complaining about the loan deal now) Anthony Caceres inexplicitly found himself sent off for the second time in as many appearances for the club. Whilst the second yellow appeared a little unlucky the player has only himself to blame for picking up an unnecessary yellow earlier in the piece. Van’t Schip needs to pull Caceres aside and tell him to pull his head in, otherwise the loan deal could be cut short and a cold Manchester training track awaits. Of course he won’t be sent back to his parent club, but you would take a useless Koren over a bloke who cannot stay on the pitch.
Hopefully the Mariners will be an easier assignment but you can never take anything for granted in the A-League (Ok, maybe Ben Williams to be heavy handed with yellow cards). Make sure all supporters get out and support the boys next Sunday afternoon and we can continue to build this club.Google+