Jets overcome Galaxy

The Newcastle Jets have come from behind to beat the La Galaxy 2-1 in an entertaining exhibition match at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Saturday night.

The Newcastle Jets have come from behind to beat the La Galaxy 2-1 in an entertaining exhibition match at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Saturday night.

Galaxy skipper Landon Donovan got the opener in the seventh minute before Jets veteran Sasho Petrovski equalised six minutes before half-time.

Newcastle striker Labinot Haliti scored the winner in the 52nd minute and while the visitors attacked strongly in the final half-hour the Jets held on to register an historic win.

The match started in perfect conditions in front of a sold-out crowd or 23, 317 and it was the Galaxy who started better.

The visitors were award a free-kick in the third minute 30 metres out from goal, perfect for star drawcard David Beckham to try one of his trademark dead-ball strikes, but he sent it high and wide of the target.

Just four minutes the opened the scoring when skipper Landon Donovan got on the end of an Edson Buddle cross from the right wing to chest the ball into an open goal.

The Galaxy should have had another a few minutes later when Juninho fired a vicious shot from 30 metres out that struck the underside of the crossbar and looked to have gone over the line. But play was allowed to continue and the score remained 1-0.

The Jets still, who seemed overawed by the occasion, eventually found their confidence and it was veteran striker Sasho Petrovski who had the first chance on goal in the 14th minute.

Adam D-Apuzzo whipped in a dangerous cross to the near post. Petrovski got in front of his marker and fired a header on target only to see Galaxy goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts produce a great reflex save to parry away the shot.

Momentum started to swing the Jets- way and they went close to grabbing an equaliser.

Tarek Elrich shot from distance in the 23rd minute, a few moments later Jobe Wheelhouse headed an Ali Abbas cross into the arms of Ricketts while Abbas shot wide in the 37th minute when he probably should have crossed to an unmarked Petrovski on the

The Jets finally profited from their pressure with an equaliser in the 39th minute when D-Apuzzo and Abbas worked a nice play down the left wing. Abbas sent in a low cross into the box where Petrovski met it on the edge of the six-yard box with a lovely left foot to put it into the corner of the net.

Beckham had a chance right on the stroke of half-time when he was put into an acre of space with down the right flank.

The England international raced into the penalty area before firing a shot just outside the far post to leave the teams locked 1-1 at half-time

Both sides made wholesale changes at half-time and it was Newcastle who profited when substitute striker Labinot Haliti got on the end of a long ball from Kasey Wehrman and despite the attention of three defenders, was able to slot home the goal to make it 2-1 to the Jets after 52 minutes.

The pace of the game slowed noticeably in the latter stages of the second half but Beckham tried his hardest to draw the Galaxy level.

Two dangerous free-kicks into the box were well defended by the Jets while down the other end Haliti went close to grabbing his second but headed just over the bar.

Jets substitute James Virgili should have put the match to bed in the 85th minute when he fired to the near post when he had striker Zhang Shuo unmarked in front of goal.

Beckham almost levelled the match in injury time when he found himself on the edge of the area on a counter attack but he fired a lofted volley just over the crossbar and the Jets held on for an entertaining 2-1 win.

Newcastle Jets 2 (Petrovski 39, Haliti 52)
LA Galaxy 1 (Donovan 7)

Crowd 23, 317 at EnergyAustralia Stadium.