Melbourne City has gone down to the Wellington Phoenix on the road as a sole David Williams strike secured the points for the Nix
Williams’ first goal against his previous A-League side came in the fifth minute as his side made the most of the home ground advantage.
It was a strong showing in the second half from the visitors, however an inspired performance from Wellington goalkeeper Philip Kurto kept City at bay as Warren Joyce’s men were unable to find a way back into the match.
City complete a busy January schedule with four wins and a draw from seven matches as they move into February with a match against Sydney FC on Sunday.
A busy January schedule took it’s toll on Curtis Good who pulled up sore from Tuesday’s clash with Western Sydney. Luke Brattan was also feeling the effects, starting on the bench for the contest.
Lachie Wales and Nathaniel Atkinson came into the side to replace them while Moudi Najjar retained his spot on the bench with Ramy Najjarine coming in to fill the final spot on the bench for the clash.
Dario Vidosic played 64 minutes in the Y-League, passing the test well and should be available for selection ahead of next week’s contest.
— Melbourne City FC ?️ (@MelbourneCity) January 26, 2019
City were placed on the back foot in the opening five minutes as Club legend, now Wellington Phoenix player David Williams opened the scoring. A long ball over the City defence saw Roy Krishna whip in an inch-perfect ball to the forward who curled his effort into the side netting.
After a VAR review of the goal, referee Jonathan Barrero and his team ticked off the effort despite video footage suggesting the goal was a clear offside.
Despite the setback, City continued to work their way into the contest, with the hosts having the balance of play in the first half.
A save from Eugene Galekovic and an important block from Harrison Delbridge kept the visitors in the match as City went into the sheds with a tough mountain to climb.
Whatever was said at the break sparked City into action as Joyce’s men began on the front foot. Wales and McGree had chances to use their speed in the opening moments but neither were able to penetrate the Nix goaline.
It was then Kearyn Baccus who had the chance of the match for City as he forced a wonderful stop from the Phoenix custodian and man-of-the-match Philip Kurto. Similar to Williams’ goal, a cutback from the left met the boot of Baccus with pace as Kurto dropped low between a sea of bodies to make the stop.
Kurto remained the thorn in City’s side as the Polish goalkeeper was called upon again by the Nix in the final minute of stoppage time. McGree’s thunderbolt strike was pushed away from goal as City departed Westpac Stadium empty handed.
City head to Sydney to take on FC at Jubilee Stadium on Sunday, kick-off 5pm.