Ten-man Melbourne Heart secure dramatic win


Ten-man Melbourne Heart FC secured a dramatic come-from-behind win to defeat in-form Sydney FC 2-1 in sensational circumstances at AAMI Park on Friday night.

Ten-man Melbourne Heart FC secured a dramatic come-from-behind win to defeat in-form Sydney FC 2-1 in sensational circumstances at AAMI Park on Friday night.

A spectacular late goal from substitute David Williams secured the Blue Ribbon Cup for Melbourne Heart and gave Melbourne’s supporters consecutive home wins to savour.

Williams- memorable solo effort in the 89th came after Jonaton Germano-s equaliser in the 52nd minute, which cancelled out Corey Gameiro-s first-half opener for the visitors

Melbourne Heart began the match with an altered formation, playing a three-man defense consisting of Robbie Wieleart, Patrick Kisnorbo and Jason Hoffman. This meant Aziz Behich moved into midfield while Jonatan Germano closely guarded the back three.

John van-t Schip-s men began with sharp intent; their first effort on goal coming from a corner in the 7th minute when Jonatan Germano-s shot was deflected off the line by a Sydney defender.

Behich seemed to be relishing the freedom in the midfield when in the 11th minute he broke brilliantly from deep taking the ball all the way to the 18-yard box before a quick one two with Harry Kewell resulted in his shot skimming inches wide of Vedran Janjetovic-s goal.

Sydney-s danger man Alessandro Del Piero began energetically, acting as the calm and skillful fulcrum for most of his side-s best attacking moments.

Del Piero-s side showed its desire to continue last week-s ruthless form against Melbourne Victory as Milos Dimitrijevic hit the crossbar with a powerful shot from outside of the box in the 17th minute.

Corey Gamiero then continued the visitor-s press for a goal when he outpaced Wielaert to find himself through on goal, before some brilliant intervention from ‘keeper Andrew Redmayne thwarted the goal-scoring chance.

Despite this, Melbourne Heart continued to control the pace of the match, resulting in Germano-s header saved on the line by Vedran Janjetovic in the 22nd minute following a corner.

The game continued at a frenetic pace with Heart enjoying some of its best play of the season until the Club-s marquee signing Orlando Engelaar, in just his second start for the Club, was shown a straight red card for an awkward tackle on Hagi Gligor.

The dismissal of the former Dutch International forced the home side to revert to a back four as van-t Schip opted to be more cautious defensively rather than have an extra number in midfield.

Sydney FC wasted no time in taking advantage of Heart-s loss of a player, going 1-0 up as Gamiero smashed home a deflected Dimitrijevic cross which had been subsequently fumbled by Redmayne in the 39th minute.

Heart continued to battle on despite the circumstances they were faced with. As the half ended, Iain Ramsay was felled in the box, causing the vocal home support to plead for a penalty but referee Jarred Gillett waved away the appeals.

The second half began with both sides unchanged and Massimo Murdocca was quick to test Janjetovic, forcing him to save a curling and deflected effort from outside of the area in the 47th minute.

Melbourne Heart continued to pressure Sydney-s resistance with a series of corners that resulted in two penalty shouts, one a handball off Del Piero from Kewell’s strike and another seeing Patrick Kisnorbo wrestled to the ground by his opponent.

This persistence eventually payed off for Germano who equalised in the 52nd minute after a fortuitous piece of play.

Germano-s initial scoop on goal was cleared off the line by Matt Jurman, but that clearance fell to Janjetovic who fumbled his save, causing the ball to fall to the Argentine-s feet and Germano calmly slotted home into an open goal.

Despite being a man down, van-t Schip-s side were playing with tenacity and appetite for the contest, often stretching Sydney and deserved to be equal.

However, as the game entered the final 20 minutes, Melbourne began to tire and Sydney started to take more of the initiative with the extra man. Shot-s from Sebastian Ryall, Del Piero and the lively Gameiro all failed to find the winning goal.

Despite this, AAMI Park was almost sent into delirium when Wielaert forced a fine save from Janjetovic as he attempted to put away David Williams- blocked free kick in the 87th minute from close range.

But they did not have to wait long to celebrate, with Williams producing a sublime individual effort, running the length of his attacking half before slotting home to give Melbourne an unlikely, yet deserved, win.

Taking the ball from a defensive clearance, Williams charged from the halfway line, into the box, jinking two defenders and putting the ball past the desperate Janjetovic.

Heart managed to hold out for the final few minutes and were rewarded with a famous win for the Club and its fans.

Match Details
Hyundai A-League Round 17
Friday, 31 January 2014
Melbourne Heart FC 2 (Germano 52′, Williams 89′)
Sydney FC 1 (Gameiro 39-)
Attendance: 7,674
Referee: Jarred Gillett

Melbourne Heart FC Starting XI: 1.Andrew REDMAYNE (GK), 3.Robbie WIELAERT, 4.Orlando ENGELAAR, 7.Iain RAMSAY (15.David WILLIAMS 69-), 8.Massimo MURDOCCA, 10.Harry KEWELL (C) (6.Patrick GERHARDT 91-), 13.Jonatan GERMANO, 16.Aziz BEHICH, 17.Jason HOFFMAN, 23.Mate DUGANDZIC (19.Benjamin GARRUCCIO 77-), 24.Patrick KISNORBO
Substitutes not used: 20.Tando VELHAPI (GK), 22.Nicholas KALMAR.
Yellow Cards: Behich 35-
Red Cards: Engelaar 32-

Sydney FC Starting XI: 2.Sebastian RYALL, 4.Ranko DESPOTOVIC, 5.Matthew JURMAN, 6.Nikola PETKOVIC, 9.Corey GAMEIRO, 10.Alessandro DEL PIERO (C), 19.Nick CARLE (11.Richard GARCIA 60-), 20.Vedran JANJETOVIC (GK), 21.Milos DIMITRIJEVIC (29 Alex UROSEVSKI 77-), 22.Ali ABBAS, 24.Hagi GLIGOR
Substitutes not used: 1.Ivan NECEVSKI (GK), 25.Daniel PETKOVSKI, 28. Matthew THOMPSON.
Yellow Cards: Janjetovic 41-, Gligor 44-, Petkovic 51-
Red Cards: Nil