Report: Oakleigh Cannons 0-8 Melbourne City FC


Melbourne City FC continued its preparations for its Westfield FFA Cup Quarter Final with a comfortable 8-0 win over Victorian National Premier Leagues club Oakleigh Cannons.

A double from Robi Koren – either side of Erik Paartalu’s opener and Stefan Mauk’s strike just before the half time whistle – led the visitors into the break 4-0 ahead.

City made changes at the break, with a handful of young players entering the fray, with Chris Cristaldo, Hernan Espindola and Wade Dekker, with a double, netting the second-half goals.

The match, at the Cannons’ Jack Edwards Reserve was attended by almost 2000 fans on a chilly Wednesday night, with Oakleigh’s famous souvlaki and warm hospitality luring a great mid-week turn out as City turned on an impressive display.

With both teams featuring in the FFA Cup Quarter Finals later this month, Wednesday night’s match provided the opportunity for both sides to guage their progress heading into the final eight of the competition.

City started with a strong starting XI, but also fielded trailist Callum Richardson in his second pre-season outing, after featuring in the Club’s 5-0 win over North Geelong Warriors last Friday night, as well as youngster Steve Kuzmanovski, who joined during the winter.

It didn’t take long for Melbourne to stamp their authority in the fixture as a recycled corner found Paartalu, whose imposing figure rose highest to nod home the opening goal in the fourth minute.

Koren netted the first of his two goals on the night just three minutes later, tapping home after good work from Uruguayan striker Bruno Fornaroli.

Those early goals allowed City to settle and continue to press, with further chances falling to Stefan Mauk and Stefan Zinni, with the later just failing to turn a deft through-ball inside the upright, depsite beating the Cannons’ keeper.

Mauk finished a neat, sweeping move involving Koren and Fornaroli in the 33rd minute before a similarly attractive attacking move was cooly slotted in by Koren three minutes before the break.

Half time brought a series of substitutions for Melbourne City, but the goals continued to flow as substitute Dekker netted his first in the 65th minute.

Fellow substitute Chris Cristaldo scored the pick of the bunch with a cracking strike into the top corner on the 71st minute mark, before Dekker made it 7-0 in the 78th minute.

Hernan Espindola applied the icing on the cake, beating the offside trap and netting the final goal of the match six minutes before time.

Match Details
Pre-Season Friendly
Wednesday, 9 September 2015
Oakleigh Cannons SC 0
Melbourne City FC 8 (Erik Paartalu 4’, Robi Koren 7’, 42’, Stefan Mauk 33’, Wade Dekker 65’, 78’, Chris Cristaldo 71’, Hernan Espindola 84’)
Venue: Jack Edwards Reserve, Oakleigh
Crowd: ~1500