‘Super Dave’ proves super-sub again


Striker David Williams proved a super-sub for the second week running as a resurgent Melbourne Heart FC recorded its third win in four matches, defeating Perth Glory 2-1 at Lavington Sports Ground, Albury.

Striker David Williams proved a super-sub for the second week running as a resurgent Melbourne Heart FC recorded its third win in four matches, defeating Perth Glory 2-1 at Lavington Sports Ground, Albury.

Patrick Kisnorbo-s header from a corner in the 51st minute gave Melbourne a deserved 1-0 lead, but Steven McGarry equalised, capitalising on a dangerous set piece for Glory in the 73rd minute to peg Melbourne back.

But Williams – affectionately known by Melbourne supporters as ‘Super Dave- – secured the match-winner late in the contest, as he had done the week before against Sydney FC in dramatic circumstances – to give Melbourne Heart all three points.

The triumph lay to rest Melbourne Heart-s record outside of Victoria, with the match played on the ‘Border- in New South Wales, and secured back-to-back wins for the first time this season.

Head Coach John van-t Ship made only one change to the side that defeated Sydney 2-1 last week, promoting Mauk for his first- ever starting birth, replacing the suspended Orlando Engelaar.

Mauk didn-t take long to impress, interchanging with captain Harry Kewell in the 6th minute to skilfully work his way into Perth-s box, only to lose possession at the pivotal moment.

Melbourne Heart continued to hold the initiative in the opening phase, regularly pushing Glory to defend deep within its own box. Kewell then had his own effort to open the scoring, powering past Glory marquee William Gallas, only to drag his shot wide of the goal in the 7th minute.

The first half was broken into thirds due to the conditions, with two drinks breaks to allow players to rehydrate – and the first, 15 minutes into the match, did not disrupt Heart-s rhythm.

Soon after the first break, Iain Ramsay rifled in a low cross through the box, only for Mate Dugandzic to just miss the chance to steer a shot goal-ward.

In the 27th minute Ramsay tried to capitalise on a Rostyn Griffiths slip up, as he gave away possession to the Red and White-s wide man, and the number 7 forced the first save of the match from Glory ‘keeper Danny Vukovic, who tipped the shot over the bar.

The half finished with Perth having its first meaningful attempt on goal as captain Jacob Burns shot dangerously over the bar after being set up with a cut back from striker Shane Smeltz.

The teams enjoyed a much-needed respite from the heat after 45 minutes, in a half where Perth was content to sit deep and allow Heart to dictate the terms of the contest, as the sides entered the break at 0-0.

The second half began with the Glory slightly upping its attacking intensity and it almost paid off as Smeltz just missed the opportunity to run onto an ill-directed Jonatan Germano back pass.

Despite this, Melbourne Heart were finally rewarded for its dominance as Kisnorbo rose highest above a pack of players to powerfully head home Mate Dugandzic-s perfectly weighted corner in the 51st minute.

After Kisnorbo-s goal – his second goal for the Red and White – van-t Schip opted for fresh legs in the hot conditions, bringing on last week-s match winner Williams and Ben Garrucio for Mauk and Kewell, respectively.

After a brief period of pressure on Andrew Redmayne-s goal, McGarry was able to equalise for Perth in the 73rd minute through a corner, after Aziz Behich cleared the Glory-s initial effort off the line.

Heart were desperate to send its regional supporters – and those who travelled from Melbourne – home as winners, with Nick Kalmar introduced after the equaliser. His free kick found the head of an open Kisnorbo in the 79th minute, but he directed the effort agonisingly wide.

However, Melbourne Heart fans were sent into raptures as last week-s match-winner Williams put his side ahead.

Garrucio played the striker straight through on goal after picking up a stray Perth pass and after Williams- initial effort was blocked by Vukovic, the super-sub looped home the ball into an open goal in the 81st minute.

Before the win was assured, Heart had to see off five added minutes up against a rejuvenated Glory outfit that was eager to snatch at least a point from their road trip to Albury.

Match Details
Hyundai A- League Round 18
Sunday, 9 February 2014
Melbourne Heart FC 2 (Kisnorbo 51-, Williams 81-)
Perth Glory 1 (McGarry 73-)
Lavington Sports Ground, Albury City
Attendance: TBC
Referee: Lucien Laverdure

Melbourne Heart FC Starting XI: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE (GK), 3. Robbie WIELART, 7. Iain RAMSAY (22. Nicholas KALMAR 77-), 8. Massimo MURDOCCA, 10. Harry KEWELL(c) (19. Benjamin GARRUCIO 59-), 13. Jonatan GERMANO 16. Aziz BEHICH, 17. Jason HOFFMAN, 21. Stefan MAUK (15. David WILLIAMS 56-), 23. Mate DUGANDZIC, 24. Patrick KISNORBO
Substitutes not used: 6. Patrick GERHARDT, 20. Tando VELHAPI (GK)
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil

Perth Glory Starting XI: 1. Daniel VUKOVIC (GK), 5. Rostyn GRIFFITHS (8. Nebojsa MARINKOVIC 65-) , 7. Jacob BURNS ©, 9. Shane SMELTZ, 14. Steven MCGARRY, 17. Chris HAROLD (10. Jamie MACLAREN 86-), 19. Joshua RISDON, 23. Michael THWAITE, 25. Riley WOODCOCK, 28. Darvydas SERNAS (16. Sidnei SCIOLA MORAES 46-), 36. William GALLAS.
Substitutes not used: 2. Jack CLISBY, 18. Jack DUNCAN (GK)
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil