Sydney FC open account

Sydney FC have opened their National Youth League account, winning their first match of the season in a 2-0 victory over Perth Glory at 6PR Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Sydney FC have opened their National Youth League account, winning their first match of the season in a 2-0 victory over Perth Glory at 6PR Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Powered by a dynamic performance from Australian Under-19 player Kofi Danning, the Sky Blues scored twice in the first half as they took advantage of a gusty sea breeze sweeping in from the coast.

In the 16th minute Danning’s pass helped set up Dimitri Petratos before the speedy forward took advantage of a Glory defensive mishap to double the lead 12 minutes later.

The Glory saw a good chance by midfielder Brandon O’Neill come off the upright during the second half, but that was the best of their opportunities as they lost their second game in a row.

For the Sky Blues, though, their first win this season comes after three draws, the result seeing them climb above the Mariners into seventh on the National Youth League table.

Sydney didn’t have it all their own way to begin with however, as the Glory laid siege to the visitor’s goal in the opening stages.

With less than a minute on the clock Sydney goalkeeper Dylan Mitchell was forced to save Glory striker Billy Quinncroft’s close-range effort while Cameron Edwards’ netted shot was flagged offside in the 12th minute.

It was a controversial call by the linesman as Harry O’Brien’s cross from the left was deemed offside due to Quinncroft’s involvement in the play, the official saying he influenced the contest without taking possession of the ball, even though Edwards was onside when O’Brien sent in his cross.

Sydney, though, took advantage of the missed chance for Perth, as they took the lead four minutes later.

A speculative long ball forward looked like it would be easily dealt with by Glory defender Brent Griffiths. But when Griffiths scuffed his effort to clear on the left side of the field, Danning pounced, passing off neatly for Petratos to slam in a quality finish.

It just got worse for Perth in the 28th minute and again it was the unfortunate Griffiths who was involved. Under pressure from Danning, the central defender attempted a lofted pass back to the goalkeeper but didn’t put enough power on it.

This forced Glory stopper Alex Pearson to desperately come off his line to take the ball, but Danning was too quick, getting to it first and gently lobbing it over the ‘keeper for Sydney’s second.

Perth responded as Edwards saw a chip shot land on the top netting before a heavy touch from Glory midfielder Andrija Jukic saw a good chance go begging close to goal.

Sydney should have been further ahead at the break however, as Danning cut off Josh Risdon’s backpass in defence, Danning’s strike coming off the inside of the upright and bouncing to safety.

The Glory started with greater intensity after the break, however, as impressive midfielder O’Neill took possession on the left of the penalty area, curling in a shot that also came off the upright in the 53rd minute.

Perth’s Howard Fondyke then saw a shot saved while impressive Glory winger Storm Roux produced a spectacular run down the left before passing to second-half substitute Sahr Musa, who was narrowly flagged offside when in a good position to run into goal.

However, for all Perth’s efforts, it was Sydney that finished the stronger as skipper Joel Chianese somehow skied his shot over an open goal from two metres out before seeing a later effort palmed around the post by the quick-thinking Pearson.

Perth Glory 0
Sydney FC 2 (Petratos 16, Danning 28)
6PR Stadium, Perth