Heart youth thump Sydney

Melbourne Heart have climbed further away from the Youth League cellar after thrashing Sydney FC 5-1 at Leichhardt Oval.

Melbourne Heart have climbed further away from the Youth League cellar after thrashing Sydney FC 5-1 at Leichhardt Oval.

Three second half goals sealed the visitors’ win in stifling conditions, with the referee calling a drinks break every 15 minutes as players struggled in the 35c heat.

The win eases Heart into sixth spot.

The Sky Blues, with new Hyundai A-League coach Frank Farina watching from the stands, stay rooted in ninth after a disappointing display.

The hosts gave up at least three goals through poor defending and never really threatened to get anything out of the game.

Keifer Dotti’s careless pass out of defence enabled Cameron Edwards to pounce and set Nicholas Epifano up for the game’s first goal on 15 minutes.

Heart doubled their lead 20 minutes later when Sydney again failed to clear the ball cleanly and a nod down fell to Evangelos Batsis to slam into the back of the net from close range.

Batsis had a great chance to increase his side’s advantage soon after but was unable to beat keeper Ryan Norval in a one-on-one contest.

The ball travelled up the other and Sydney’s best chance of the half fell to Peter Triantis, whose long range drive smacked against the crossbar.

Both sides rang the changes at half-time in the hope fresh legs would provide some impetus in the oppressive conditions.

Sydney did press higher up the park but never really created a clear-cut opportunity in the opening 15 minutes.

And they were fortunate not to go another goal down when Heart’s Paul Retre struck only to see the offside flag raised.

The hosts eventually found a way back via a lovely goal from the edge of the box by Alec Urosevski on 70 minutes.

But the lifeline lasted barely two minutes.

Retre put Heart 3-1 up when he was first to react to a blocked shot in the goalmouth.

It was simply a bridge too far for Sydney from there,

Batsis sealed the victory on 83 minutes, heading home Edwards’ excellent free kick to collect a deserved double, before Stefan Mauk added a fifth in injury time.

Sydney FC 1 (Urosevski 68)
Melbourne Heart 5 (Epifano 15, Batsis 35, 83, Retre 72, Mauk 90+)

Sydney FC: Norval (Bouzanis 45), Dotti, Macdonald, Naumoff, Petkovski (Kofinas 45), Speranza, Stergiou, Taneski, Triantis, Urosevski, Lum
Res: Bouzanis, Kofinas, Slater

Melbourne Heart: Karvelis, Abbott, Batsis, Groenewald (Karvelis 58), Mebrahtu, Petreski, Edwards, Bray (Maynard 80), Mauk, Maynard, Kaya, Cartanos (Retre 45), Gray, Epifano, Retre