Callum Talbot took his seat in the press conference, with the Melbourne City full-back named Player of the Match for his performance in a six-goal AFC Champions League thriller.
But the media officer in Japan still did not know who Talbot was, even after his stunning goal in the 3-3 draw against Ventforet Kofu in Tokyo on Wednesday night (AEDT).
Introducing City interim boss Aurelio Vidmar and Talbot, who had opened the scoring with a rocket of a shot inside five minutes, the officer struggled with the Australian defender.
After introducing Vidmar, he was about to introduce Talbot by saying, “Player of the Match, number 25…”
He paused and then asked Talbot: “Sorry, what’s your name?”.
Vidmar and Talbot both smiled, before the latter turned around and showed the officer the back of his jersey. Watch the classic moment in the player above.
Three-time reigning Isuzu UTE A-League premiers City twice led in the penultimate group fixture in the Champions League fixture.
Ventforet’s Jumma Miyazaki equalised in the 85th minute to ensure the points were shared in the Japanese capital, where Socceroo Mathew Leckie made his long-awaited comeback from a knee injury.
City led 3-2 late on thanks to a second-half comeback, but opened the door for J2 League outfit Ventforet to find a late reply.
A draw for City ensured Ventforet remain top of Group H, though both teams have eight points from five matchdays. Arthur Papas’ Buriram United and Chinese side Zhejiang are two points off the pace.
“I think we had a very strong game today,” Vidmar told reporters, with City now four games without a win across all competitions. “It was a game that we showed a lot of passion. It was a game we were tactically very strong.
“In a way a little bit disappointed because we come away from home, score three goals and normally we should win this.
“It is football. we’ve played some crazy football games since I’ve been here. But we’re still fighting now. We take one point each and there’s everything to play for in the final game.”
Miguel Di Pizio came to Central Coast Mariners’ rescue on Wednesday night, and his coach was understandably pleased.
The 17-year-old Joeys sensation scored his first competitive goal in senior football as the Mariners rescued a 1-1 draw with Terengganu FC in the AFC Cup.
Central Coast could have secured a spot in the AFC Cup knockouts with a win at Industree Group Stadium but failed to clinch three points on a frustrating night in Gosford, where a goal against the run of play from Engku Nur Shakir put the Malaysian side ahead in the second half.
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However, Di Pizio – who has just 20 minutes of A-Leagues football to his name – came off the bench in the 61st minute and equalised with three minutes of regulation remaining and he celebrated emotionally in wet conditions on the coast.
“He has been showing things in training,” Mariners manager Mark Jackson told reporters of Di Pizio post-match.
“He is a young player with huge potential. He is one of a number of young players at this club with huge potential.
“That’s all he’s got. When he went on, it was clear to see that potential. He got into some great positions, he understood what we wanted from him.
“He popped up with a goal, so really, really pleased for him.
“But again I’m pleased for the team as well because we showed resilience and character until the very end.”
The Mariners retain top spot in Group G, and will travel to the Philippines to take on Stallion Laguna FC on the final day of the group stage on December 13.
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