NPL Round 6 Weekly Wrap
Northern Fury join Olympic FC, Redlands United and Brisbane Strikers in the top four after a thrilling Round 6 of National Premier Leagues football.
Review all the weekend action in the weekly wrap.
|2||Redlands United FC||6||5||0||1||24||7||+17||15|
|3||Brisbane Strikers FC||6||5||0||1||25||15||+10||15|
|4||Northern Fury FC||6||3||1||2||12||10||+2||10|
|5||Brisbane City FC||5||3||0||2||23||14||+9||9|
|6||Sunshine Coast FC Fire||5||3||0||2||14||6||+8||9|
|7||Moreton Bay United Jets FC||5||3||0||2||9||13||-4||9|
|8||Palm Beach Sharks FC||5||1||1||3||8||9||-1||4|
|9||Western Pride FC||6||1||1||4||6||16||-10||4|
|10||FNQ FC Heat||6||1||1||4||7||20||-13||4|
|12||Queensland Academy of Sport||6||0||1||5||4||20||-16||1|
Redlands United FC 3 (Jheison MACUACE 17’, Keiran PURCELL 88’, Reuben WAY 90’+2)
Queensland Academy of Sport 1 (Abraham YANGO 77’)
Crowd: 900 approx.
Redlands United recorded their fifth straight win of their National Premier Leagues campaign on Friday night, scoring two goals in the final minutes to edge out a valiant QAS 3-1 at Cleveland Showgrounds.
The Devils once again shared the spoils in front goal with Jheison Macuace, Keiran Purcell and Reuben Way each chipping in for the hosts, while Abraham Yango chimed in for the Academy.
Macuace opened accounts for the hosts when he pounced on a defensive error before coolly slotting his shot past the goalkeeper to give the hosts an early advantage, which they held for the next hour.
The rapidly improving QAS kept the pressure on Redlands and deservedly levelled terms late in the second half when Abraham Yango rocketed a 25 yard screamer into the top right corner.
However, the youngsters couldn’t hold on against the home side, Redlands pinching all three points in the final minutes courtesy of two late goals.
Keiren Purcell restored the advantage when his shot from the byline deflected into the goal off QAS goalkeeper Fraser Chalmer’s foot before Reuben Way then sealed the points in time added on with a clinical finish from a tight angle.
The win sees Redlands hold second place on the NPL table, one point adrift of league-leaders Olympic FC. QAS drop to bottom place with a single point from their opening six fixtures.
Northern Fury FC 2 (Jared STANLEY 2’, Alex READ 37’)
Palm Beach Sharks FC 2 (Chris LUCAS 63’pen 72’pen)
Crowd: 1950 approx.
Northern Fury have edged their way into the top four on the NPL ladder despite letting slip a two goal half-time advantage to draw 2-2 with Palm Beach Sharks at Townsville Sports Reserve.
Jared Stanley gave the hosts the perfect start in just the second minute of the match when he turned in a well-placed header from an early corner.
Last week’s hat-trick hero Alex Read then extended Fury’s lead eight minutes prior to half-time, chipping the keeper to the delight of the enthusiastic Townsville home crowd to take the 21 year old’s season tally to five.
Fury however conceded two penalties in the final half hour to eventually split the points with the visitors – Chris Lucas slotting both spot kicks for the visitors to take his season tally to three for the Sharks.
Hopes of an improbable Palm Beach comeback were dashed however when captain Justyn McKay was dismissed for a second yellow card in the final minutes, meaning he will be suspended for Sharks next fixture.
The single point sees Palm Beach remain in the bottom half of the half of the table, however Oscar Langone’s side hold a home game in hand against Sunshine Coast, now rescheduled for the ANZAC Day public holiday.
Brisbane Strikers FC 7 (Matt THURTELL 11’, Greg KING 27’ 79’ 87’, Josh MCVEY 46’, Jonti RICHTER 57’ 90’+3)
Moreton Bay United Jets FC 0
Crowd: 300 approx.
Brisbane Strikers recorded their first clean sheet of the season on Saturday night as they humbled Moreton Bay United Jets 7-0 at Perry Park on the back of superb performances from wingers Greg King and Jonti Richter.
King scored a hat-trick and Richter a brace as the hosts overcame a physical Moreton Bay outfit who never found their attacking rhythm against a Strikers defence that’s struggled in earlier rounds.
The ever reliable Matt Thurtell opened the scoring when he latched on to a through ball on 11 minutes before King’s first goal of the evening – a stinging first time strike – gave the hosts a 2-0 advantage at the break.
Moreton Bay’s night went from bad to worse in the second half when Josh McVey extended Strikers lead with a curling right-footed shot barely a minute after the restart.
Richter then tapped in from King’s cross just prior to the hour, before King scored twice more from distance in quick time – the left winger’s third goal a sublime lobbed shot over the keeper from 25 yards.
Substitute Josh De Nettis impressed off the bench late in the second half, playing the final pass for the final two goals; Strikers rounding out an impressive full pitch performance when the normally goal-shy Richter finished confidently to secure his second in the final minutes.
The win sees Strikers hold on to third spot on the NPL table, equal on points with Redlands United and one point adrift of league leaders Olympic FC.
Moreton Bay drop to the bottom half of the table for the first time this season, however the northern suburbs club also maintain a game in hand.
FNQ FC Heat 1 (Justin SABBADIN 19’)
CQFC Energy 4 (Chris GEDDES 33’ 75’, Sander Waterland 66’, Jake WILSON 88’)
Crowd: 1000 approx.
CQFC Energy have cast aside their early season form woes to record their first National Premier Leagues win, defeating a ten man FNQ FC Heat 4-1 in Cairns to lift the Rockhampton-based side off the foot of the competition table for the first time this season.
Chris Geddes once again was the go to man for CQFC, scoring a goal in each half in the come from behind from victory to take his tally to eight for the campaign.
FNQ FC took the early advantage when Justin Sabbadin turned in a low cross from Paul Eigl before Geddes goal saw the sides draw level at the half time break.
The back and forth continued in the second half before CQFC ran away with the result in the final half hour following the straight dismissal of the Heat’s Shane Raso.
Sander Waterland gave the visitors the advantage with his second goal of the campaign, before Geddes chimed in once more to secure the result.
Jake Wilson added a fourth in the final minutes to see CQFC put a tumultuous week behind them and get the club’s season back on track. The Energy will face their biggest challenge of the season thus far next weekend when they welcome league leaders Olympic FC to their Rugby Park home ground on Saturday night.
Brisbane City FC 3 (Antonio MURRAY 65’, Alistair PASE 69’, Dean LE PETIT 84’)
Western Pride 2 (Russell WOODRUFFE 62’, Peter DRAGER 88’)
Crowd: 700 approx. (double header combined)
A frantic final thirty minutes at Goodwin Park has seen Brisbane City defeat Western Pride 3-2 in the opening match of the Sunday’s National Premier Leagues double header.
Following a cagey opening hour, the match came to life in the second half when Russell Woodruffe pounced on a parried save from City goalkeeper Matthew Stein to convert from close range.
Pride’s lead was only temporary though as City scored twice in five minutes to regain the ascendency – star striker Antonio Murray turning in a free kick at the near post before Alistair Pase’s well-placed header left Pride goalkeeper Steve Purdy little chance of a save.
Substitute Dean Le Petit extended City’s lead in the final ten minutes only to see Peter Drager pull a goal back for Pride to ensure a dramatic period of stoppage time.
City however held firm at the death to record their third consecutive win of the campaign, moving into the top half of the table on nine points – equal with Moreton Bay United Jets and Sunshine Coast Fire, who, like City, both have a game in hand.
Olympic FC 4 (Jake MCLEAN 37’, Jai INGHAM 73’, Carl TABULO 83’, Ross ARCHIBALD 89’)
Sunshine Coast FC Fire 1 (Wade ZAMMIT 61’)
Crowd: 700 approx. (double header combined)
Olympic FC maintained their hold on top spot in the National Premier Leagues on Sunday evening with a comprehensive 4-1 defeat of title rivals Sunshine Coast Fire at Goodwin Park.
The hard-fought and tactically adroit match up saw the sides exchange counter punches throughout until Olympic ran away with the result in late in the second half.
Jake McLean ensured the hosts went to the break with the advantage after he opened the scoring by latching on to a deflection from Tim Smits blocked shot following a frantic goalmouth scramble.
Sunshine Coast then restored parity on the hour when Wade Zammit capitalised on an ineffective defensive clearance to steer a powerful shot past Olympic goalkeeper Shannon Lancini.
As the half wore on Olympic gained the upper hand – right winger Jai Ingham pouncing on an errant back pass to poach the ball from the grasp of Fire goalkeerp Antony Hall, before turning in his shot from an acute angle.
Substitute Carl Tabulo then extended the hosts advantage when he finished confidently from good build-up play from Olympic captain Danny Byrne and Kazuya Ito. Ross Archibald then sealed the result with a spectacular strike from 25 yards to the delight of the home fans.
The win is the fifth of the campaign for Jim Bellas’ Olympic outfit, who remain the only undefeated team in the NPL following six rounds.
Sunshine Coast Fire drop to sixth on the table, however have a chance to return to the top four midweek when they face Palm Beach Sharks in a previously postponed fixture now scheduled for ANZAC Day.
Words: Michael Flynn (Football Queensland)