Knights continue winning ways over Northcote
Melbourne Knights continues its winning start to the PlayStation 4 NPL Victoria 2015 season with a comfortable 2-0 victory over Northcote City at Knights Stadium on Friday.
After a cagey first half, Knights took the lead immediately in the second as a Northcote error from kick-off allowed Andrew Barisic in to score. Captain Tomislav Uskok sealed the three points with a glancing header 20 minutes from time.
Knights coach Andrew Marth described the first half of last week's 3-1 win over Avondale FC as the poorest he'd seen in his tenure at the club and his side were keen to avoid a repeat.
Adrian Zahra and Barisic - who both returned to Knights this season - linked well for the first time in the 11th minute, with the latter firing into the side netting with his left foot.
Zahra was next to go close after Uskok fed Barisic down the right, but the ex-Melbourne Heart and Perth Glory man could only shoot at Northcote goalkeeper Christopher Theodoridis when through on goal.
A Marino Gasparis block kept out Barisic from the resultant corner, while at the other end, Northcote were restricted to efforts from distance.
Something had to give in the second half and Northcote gifted Knights the opener when they instantly conceded possession from kick-off.
Barisic, who was impressive throughout with his deft flicks and clever touches, took full advantage, storming forward before slotting into the bottom-left corner from 18 yards less than 15 seconds after the resumption.
Gasparis missed the target twice as Northcote pressed for an equaliser, with his 54th-minute effort fizzing just wide.
Zahra then went close with a header for Knights, while he also flicked an effort at Theodoridis before Marth's men doubled their lead, as Uskok rose highest to nod in a corner from the excellent Alex Dao on the left and delight the home crowd.
The skipper limped off shortly after his goal and Northcote missed a chance to pull one back when Knights goalkeeper Chris May saved with his legs to deny William Webb.
That was as close as Northcote came, though, as they slumped to their second successive defeat.
Melbourne Knights 2 (Barisic 46', Uskok 70') defeated Northcote City 0 at Knights Stadium, Sunshine North [HT 0-0]
Melbourne Knights: 1. Chris MAY, 3. Adrian DEL MONACO, 5. Milan BATUR, 18. Joshua BREKALO, 6. Tomislav USKOK (11. Anthony COLOSIMO 73'), 8. James MCGARRY, 13. Anthony KATIFORIS, 15. Alex DAO, 21. Stipo ANDRIJASEVIC (7. Chris TALAJIC 82'), 23. Adrian ZAHRA, 27. Andrew BARISIC (Josh BERRIOS 90')
Unused Subs: 25. Michael O'FARRELL, 2. Luke JURCIC
Yellow Card (s): Uskok, Barisic
Red Card (s): Nil
Northcote City: 22. Christopher THEODORIDIS, 3. Mitchell BISSINGER, 10. Marino GASPARIS, 17. Nicholas BAVCAR, 20. Nicholas KOKOLAKIS, 8. James KALIFATIDIS, 6. Aaron WARD (23. Jonathan BOUNAS 61'), 9. William WEBB (16. Ismael MOHAMED 87'), 5. Gregory LOMBARDO, 12. Jordan WILKES, 11. Evan KOUNAVELIS (19. Ryan GO 73')
Unused Subs: 1. Mason INTERLANDI, 4. Jacob ELIOPOULOS
Yellow Card (s): Kounavelis
Red Card (s): Nil