Foord snatches winner as Sydney FC deny spirited Adelaide

Caitlin Foord grabbed the winning goal after Sydney FC were given a scare in a 1-0 victory against a youthful Adelaide United side.

The Reds had the Westfield W-League Champions shaken at half-time after Isabel Hodgson’s effort crashed off the Sky Blues crossbar, while the 23-year-old dynamic winger was also stopped from close range by Sydney keeper Aubrey Bledsoe.

The Sky Blues had controlled the bulk of possession while Adelaide created the better chances, until Foord charged through the Reds defence to strike against the run of play in the 56th minute at Marden Sports Complex.

American winger Mallory Weber was a constant danger in the Reds’ exciting front-line and teen prodigy Mary Fowler almost grabbed a late equaliser but the experience of Ante Juric’s side shone through to clinch back-to-back Westfield W-League wins.

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Sydney FC

Key moments

The Sky Blues edged the closely-contested opening exchanges as Sofia Huerta twice took aim at goal, her first effort flew straight at Sarah Willacy, her second dragged wide of the Reds goalpost.

Mallory Weber provided Adelaide’s first threat in response when the American attacker drilled a free-kick at her compatriot and Sydney FC custodian Bledsoe.

Teen sensation Mary Fowler burst into action and forced Bledsoe into a low save from the edge of the area as the Reds began to take control midway through the first half. 

The Sky Blues keeper came to the rescue once again when Hodgson collected Brazilian playmaker Lais’ precision pass and raced through on goal only to place her shot straight at Bledsoe.

The visitors wrestled control back, with Westfield Matildas Chloe Logarzo and Caitlin Foord slamming in shots from distance, but Hodgson came closest to breaking the deadlock late in the half when her flick, from Weber’s cross, rattled the top of the bar.

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The Reds picked up where they left off after the interval as Weber broke free on the left but lifted a shot off target, before the Westfield W-League newcomer hit another attempt into the side-netting.

But all of their good work was undone when Foord latched on to Logarzo’s pass, bustled her way into the Adelaide area and finished low past an onrushing Willacy.

Sydney FC grew in confidence after the goal, as Princess Ibini’s rifled shot bounced back of the post, but left-footer Weber reminded the visitors of her threat when she stung Bledsoe’s hands on the hour mark.

Substitute Georgia Campagnale gave Ivan Karlovic’s side a second wind and she found an unmarked Fowler after a twisting run on 80 minutes but the Reds starlet miscontrolled in the penalty area with the goal gaping.

Foord had struck a stoppage-time winner the last time these teams met in South Australia in December 2017, a 2-1 win for the Sky Blues, and her 33rd Westfield W-League goal proved decisive once again in the City of Churches.

MATCH CENTRE: Adelaide United v Sydney FC
Canberra United v Melbourne City

In Round 3, Adelaide United are on the road against Melbourne City at John McEwan Reserve on Saturday, 30 November. Kick-off: 7pm AEDT. Check here for ticket info.

Sydney FC travel to play Perth Glory at Dorrien Gardens on Sunday, 1 December. Kick-off: 1pm local, 4pm AEDT. Get tickets here.

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