Ten-man Floreat bring home the points
Report by Peter Simcox
Photo by Fotoenzo
Ten-man Floreat Athena secured three points to keep the pace of the top four with a hard fought 1-0 win against ECU Joondalup at ECU Joondalup Football Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Jon Stynes scored the only goal of the game eight minutes before half-time, but then had Phil Arnold sent off five minutes later.
Floreat Coach Glen Grostate said it showed the great character his side has having to battle with ten men.
“My team love a battle, and I thought we dominated the game early,” he said.
“But when you lose a man so early in a game it’s hard, it sets you back, but we set up two banks of four and they couldn’t break us down, and I thought we could have nicked another.
“Defensively we were magnificent today, Jesse (Fuller) and Dean (Evans) at the heart, and Clayton (Arnez) and Andrew (Scaldaferro) were outstanding and I thought Andrew was my man of the match, after keeping Daryl Nicol very quiet today.”
Central defender Jesse Fuller was outstanding and he said the win was important for them, especially with the other sides around them having wins over the weekend.
“We fought hard in the first half and we were pretty unlucky to get the red card but the boys dug in and got the job done,” he said.
“This win keeps us up the top, and the other teams around us won today, so we need to keep plodding along, continue to pick up three points and we’ll see what happens when we get down to the pointy end of the season.”
The visitors opened brightly, Arnold’s snap shot flashed over the top, before a Ludovic Boi rocket, stung the palms of keeper Fraser Greenwood.
Their early dominance was rewarded with the lead on 37 minutes. A cross from the right wasn’t dealt with by Greenwood and the ball fell to Stynes, who hammered it home.
ECU struggled to breakdown a solid Floreat defence well marshalled by Fuller and captain Dean Evans.
After dominating the first half, Floreat were reduced to ten men two minutes before the break when Arnold was shown a straight red card for his challenge on Kevin Moon.
ECU made a change at the break with striker James Owen coming on, and he almost had an immediate impact.
Nicol raced down the right and whipped in a deep cross to the back post with Owens’ header crashing off post.
Owen went close again mid-way through the half, but his effort was palmed away by Jason Saldaris.
ECU did everything they could to draw level but Floreat held strong to secure the three points.
ECU Joondalup 0
Floreat Athena 1 (Stynes 37min)
Saturday, June 24, 2017
ECU Football Stadium
Referee: David Bruce
Assistant Referees: Julian Serra, Andre Ferreira
ECU Joondalup: GK Fraser GREENWOOD, 3 Ross MILLARD, 4 Steven MCGARRY, 5 Graham DORAN, 6 Shane PICKERING (15 James OWEN 46’), 7 Kevin MOON, 8 Jon HIGGINS (16 Sam POLLARD 66’), 9 Daryl NICOL, 15 Fraser GARNAUT, 18 Cian HIRRELL, 19 Ben JOHNS
Substitutes not used: RGK Jordan YOUNG, 12 Declan HUGHES, 13 Roland RIXER
Yellow Cards: Moon 80, Nicol 81, Millard 88
Red Cards: Nil
Floreat Athena: GK Jason SALDARIS, 3 Clayton ARNEZ, 4 Andrew SCALDAFERRO, 6 Jesse FULLER, 8 Jon STYNES, 10 Kris GATE, 12 Jackson MORGAN, 13 Zelfy NAZARY, 14 Ludovic BOI, 17 Dean EVANS (c) 18. Phil ARNOLD
Substitutes not used: RGK Jordan BARBAS, 9 Edin NILAC, 11 Declan HUDSON, 16 Juma AWAKA, 20 Joe TWEATS
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Arnold 43