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Jul 17, 2023   |  2:53PM AET

NPL Report: Manningham 1-4 City

NPL Report: Manningham 1-4 City

Melbourne City made it back-to-back NPL2 wins on Saturday afternoon, this time overcoming Manningham United 4-1 away from home.

Tobenna Obani opened the scoring 15 minutes into the contest before the hosts equalised late in the first half. Goals to Harry Shillington, Emin Durakovic and Dom Folino in an impressive second 45 were enough for City to secure the points.

Team News

Head Coach Crisdion Krstevski stuck with a similar line-up to last week’s win over Western United.

Just one change was made with Harry Shillington replacing Medin Memeti, creating a knock-on effect with a few other positional switches.

Starting XI: James NIEUWENHUIZEN (GK), 45. Harry SHILLINGTON, 4. Joshua DAMEVSKI, 5. Jordan DELLIDIS (C), 2. Dom FOLINO, 17. Sebastian ESPOSITO, 66. Xavier STELLA, 16. Emile PEIOS, 44. Tobenna OBANI, 99. Giorgio SERDENES, 23. Max CAPUTO.

Substitutes: 90. William SPARROW (GK), 8. Emin DURAKOVIC, 18. Taylan UNAL, 24. Alec BECVINOVSKI, 33. Luqman HASSANI, 43. Marcus HUMBERT.

What happened?

The opening exchanges were relatively even, with City getting a sight at goal a few minutes in thanks to a well-taken Tobenna Obanni set piece which was scrambled over the bar for a corner.

City settled into the content well and Obanni was involved again for the opener after 17 minutes. A well-worked passing move ended with a slick one-two from him and Dom Folino, Obanni smashing home a finish into the back of the net.

Harry Shillington and Xavier Stella linked up well down the right-hand side, but Manningham was also asking questions of City’s defence.

It would hold up strongly until the 33rd minute when a cheap giveaway saw Manningham equalise thanks to a long-range strike from Jose Ramirez.

The final 15 minutes of the half were evenly matched, and City would go into the break level thanks to a strong James Nieuwenhuizen 1-on-1 stop in the final action of the half.

Emile Peios and Emin Durakovic both continued their stellar form in the middle of the park, the latter having in hand in all three second-half goals.

It didn’t take City long to re-take the lead after the second half kicked off, with Shillington finding the back of the net for the second time in as many weeks.

Durakovic whipped in a great cross from a corner, finding Shillington’s near-post run with the youngster doing a great job to twist his body and direct his header on target.

From there, a brutal 15-minute period saw City find the back of the net again on two occasions.

The Manningham keeper failed to clear his lines after a City cross, the ball landing at the feet of Dom Folino who was composed enough to find Durakovic at the edge of the box, cooly finishing to make it 3-1.

Roles were reversed four minutes later, with Durakovic this time picking up Folino for a goal. The Australian U18 midfielder once again whipped in an inch-perfect cross, with Folino able to find some space in the box and tap home a simple strike from close range.

Despite being virtually out of the contest, Manningham still put plenty of pressure on the City defence for the remainder of the match but it held strong and ran out deserved wins.

What’s next?

City will be looking to continue their winning streak when they return home to host 11th-placed Werribee City this Saturday afternoon at Parade College.