Cartanos wonder strike seals Heidelberg win over Port
By BRANDON GALGANO (@BGalgano94)
A wonder strike from Andrew Cartanos has seen a dominant Heidelberg United claim a deserved three points against Port Melbourne at Olympic Village on Sunday night.
Having completely dominated in a scoreless first half, the Bergers went behind after a goal against the run of play from Alec Goodwin just after half time, before stunning strikes from both Reuben Way and then Andrew Cartanos sealed the victory for George Katsakis’s men.
And it was the home side who took complete control of the contest early, holding the vast majority of possession, restricting Port to defending deep in their own half of the ground.
Heidelberg big man Dan Heffernan was the first to create a meaningful chance on goal, cutting onto his left before hitting a low effort from just inside the area but the strike had no power and was easily held by Stark.
Way then got himself into the game with a pile driving shot which cannoned back off the post just a minute later as the Bergers began to up the pressure.
Port then had their first opportunity of the match as Adrian Zahra found space inside the six yard box after some great work from Kamal Ibrahim down the right but the former Melbourne Heart man’s effort was poor, sailing high over the crossbar.
Heidelberg then should’ve taken the lead off of two moments of indecision at the back from Port Melbourne.
A high ball into the area from the home side was misjudged by Stark who came out but mistimed his attempt and thus allowing Heffernan to get a head to the ball but the crossbar came to the rescue for the visitors.
Just moments later Stark was at fault again, coming out for the resulting corner but not connecting with the ball but once again the hosts didn’t make the most of the opportunity before it was cleared.
Just after the break yet again a miscommunication at the back between the Port Melbourne defensive line allowed the ball to roll across the six yard box before being cleared off the goal line with Heidelberg in complete control of the match.
Despite this complete dominance it was Port who took the lead courtesy of some brilliant play from Zahra.
With Ryan Opperman receiving the ball just forward of the half way line, the former Richmond winger played a smart back heel into the path of the onrushing Zahra who took a few touches before beating a man and then whipping a fantastic low cross across the box which found Goodwin at the back post to tap home.
The goal seemed to lift Port who experienced a brief period of control for the first time in the match, and even looked dangerous for a second before the Bergers hit back in the 69th minute.
A long ball in behind the Port defence was not dealt with adequately by both goalkeeper and defender with both colliding in an attempt to clear the danger, with Stark unable to hold it the chance fell to Way who proceeded to hit a sensational first time effort which curled into the top corner, levelling the scores for the hosts at 1-1.
Following the goal, Heidelberg’s dominance of the game resumed and they finally got their winner in the 82nd minute, and what a goal it was.
Substitute Andrew Cartanos picked up the ball on the edge of the area before cutting onto his right foot, beating a defender and delightfully clipping the ball into the far top corner to send the home fans into delirium.
And despite some late pressure from the visitors, Heidelberg held firm to secure a crucial victory.
Heidelberg United 2 (Way 69’, Cartanos 82’) defeated Port Melbourne 1 (Goodwin 57’) at Olympic Village (HT 0-0).
Heidelberg United XI: 23 Griff McMASTER, 2 Jamie CUMMINGS, 13 Luke BYLES, 17 Steven PACE, 3 Les DOUMBALIS, 21 Andreas GOVAS (24 Andrew CARTANOS 69’), 20 Nejc KOLMAN, 10 Jack PETRIE, 7 Reuben WAY, 14 Dan HEFFERNAN (8 Mitchell WALSH 90’), 12 Ken ATHIU (11 Mark MCGOUGH 83’)
Unused Subs: 1 Jason KOUTSODONTIS, 15 Milos ILIC
Yellow Cards: Kolman 60’, Petrie 85’
Port Melbourne XI: 25 Michael STARK, 5 George KROMMIDAS, 21 Bryan BRAN, 6 Chris GROSSMAN, 15 Kris KIOUSSIS, 4 Alan MULCAHY (10 Andrew MILICEVIC 82’), 16 Alan KEARNEY, 7 Adrian ZAHRA, 22 Ryan OPPERMAN (20 Julius DAVIES 69’), 14 Kamal IBRAHIM (11 Nick KROUSORATIS 74’), 12 Alec GOODWIN
Unused Substitutes: 1 Stjepan GAL, 8 Brent FISHER
Yellow Cards: Kioussis 56’, Krommidas 88’