ALM Report: Sydney FC 1-1 City

Melbourne City had to share the points for the second week in a row, held to a draw away to Sydney FC on Saturday evening.

Jordan Courtney-Perkins put the hosts ahead in the first half, before Marco Tilio struck back just after the hour mark.

Team News

Aurelio Vidmar made one sole change to his starting XI from last weekend’s Melbourne Derby.

Scott Galloway was forced out of the line-up due to a calf injury, meaning new Chilean defender Vicente Fernandez was brought in to start at left back. Leo Natel was also absent from the matchday squad due to illness.

Starting XI: 1. Jamie YOUNG (GK), 25. Callum TALBOT, 26. Samuel SOUPRAYEN, 22. Curtis GOOD, 14. Vicente FERNANDEZ, 8. Jimmy JEGGO, 6. Steven UGARKOVIC, 7. Mathew LECKIE, 15. Andrew NABBOUT, 23. Marco TILIO, 9. Jamie MACLAREN (C).

Substitutes: 33. Patrick BEACH (GK), 4. Nuno REIS, 17. Terry ANTONIS, 21. Alessandro LOPANE, 37. Max CAPUTO, 38. Harry POLITIDIS, 44. Marin JAKOLIS.

What happened?

It was a back-and-forth beginning to the contest, neither team able to really grab a hold of the early momentum.

Coming in for his first start in City colours, Fernandez was a bright spot early – working hard in defence but also not afraid to dribble forward and look to create attacking opportunities.

Our first real chance of the night would come around the 20-minute mark, a nice backheel from Andrew Nabbout opening up some space for Callum Talbot on the right side of the box, but the defender was unable to capitalize.

Jamie Young was called into his first meaningful save of the night not long later, doing well to deny Joe Lolley before Robert Mak’s follow-up was into the upright.

The opener would come not long later, Courtney-Perkins firing into the top corner in the 29th minute after the City defence gave him a little too much space.

Curtis Good was on high alert to deny Robert Mak with a crucial block just minutes after the goal as we looked to see off the pressure.

It was our turn not long later when things opened up on the right-hand side.

Nabbout put in the dangerous cross which – following a deflection – made its way to Mathew Leckie, the Socceroos winger firing towards goal but denied only by a well-timed block from Rhyan Grant.

City would build into the second half well and after 15 minutes of action, we were back on level terms.

It was thanks to some smart thinking from Jamie Young who released Marco Tilio down the right.

The recently returned City attacker took a great first touch before dribbling his way toward goal, unleashing a brilliant strike that nestled into the back of the net via a touch off the far post.

Marin Jakolis was introduced a few minutes later and didn’t take long to get involved, firing just over the bar moments after coming on.

The partnership of Curtis Good and Samuel Souprayen held up well in defence throughout the second half, ensuring Sydney would have to work hard to earn any real sight at goal.

Time ticked down and a golden opportunity came our way when Tilio was fouled right on the edge of the area in the 85th minute.

Jamie Maclaren took the free kick and struck the wall, but was involved again in the second phase, heading just over the bar from a good Callum Talbot cross.

Unfortunately, that would be about the end of the chances for the night – the final whistle blowing with the score still locked at 1-1.

What’s next?

We’ll be back on the road next weekend, set for a short turnaround as we face Macarthur away on Friday night.