Wanderers account for Heart in Youth League


Western Sydney have recorded a comfortable 3-0 victory over Melbourne Heart in their Foxtel National Youth League clash at Epping Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Western Sydney have recorded a comfortable 3-0 victory over Melbourne Heart in their Foxtel National Youth League clash at Epping Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Melbourne Heart were the far better side in the first half but were to be punished for their failure to convert their early opportunities as the Wanderers came back in the second half to dominate proceedings and seal the three points.

The complexion of the game changed early in the second half with the Wanderers gaining ascendency with the lively Alusine Fofanah down the left flank key in an 18-minute stretch that returned three goals for Western Sydney.

Melbourne had a number of shots in the first half as they searched for an opening goal, coming closest when Marcus Schroen was unable to glance a header on target from a corner that had been headed back across goal.

Ersin Kaya and Jeremy Walker looked dangerous down the right flank getting past the defensive line on a number of occasions but were unable to provide delivery from wide that the Heart could convert to goals while Schroen had several shots at goal from in and around the box.

Brendon Santalab had Western Sydney’s best couple of opportunities in a quiet first half as he tested Heart shot-stopper Tando Velaphi from an acute angle and also knocked a shot across the face of goal.

Western Sydney came out of the half-time break a different side and took the lead in the 56th minute when Wanderers substitute Joshua Barresi scored a close-range goal through the keeper’s legs with his first touch of the afternoon from a Santalab squared pass.

The Wanderers pushed hard for a second creating several good chances and 12 minutes later the impressive Fofanah burst through the Heart defence with a clever first touch before scoring at pace across the keeper into the opposite corner.

The 74th minute was one to forget for Heart substitute Stipo Andrijasevic as he gave the ball away in the centre of midfield, releasing the dangerous Fofanah to set up Mark Cindric whose parried shot was miscleared into the roof of the net by the despairing Andrijasevic.

Melbourne were unable to recapture their first-half promise and were evidently frustrated picking up three late yellow cards as the game finished 3-0, with the result opening up a five-point gap for the Wanderers over the Melbourne Heart.

Match Details
Melbourne Heart 0
Western Sydney Wanderers 3 (Barresi 56, Fofanah 68, Andrijasevic 74og)
HT: 0-0
Epping Soccer Stadium

Melbourne Heart FC Starting XI: 1. Tando Velaphi (GK), 2. Jeremy Walker, 3. Philip Petreski (c) (13. Alexander Dao 61m), 4. David Vrankovic, 5. Andrew Mullet, 6. Stefan Mauk, 7. Ersin Kaya (14. Tyler James 61m), 8. Paulo Retre, 10. Marcus Schroen, 12. Dylan Macallister (11. Stipo Andrijasevic 61m), 15. Sam Mitchinson
Yellow Cards: Mauk 76m, Mitchinson 85m, Retre 88m
Red Cards: Nil

Western Sydney Wanderers Starting XI: 1. Thomas Manos (GK) (20. Blake Tuxford (GK) 83m), 2. Shayne D-Cunha, 3. Daniel Alessi, 4. James Baldacchino (12. Joshua Barresi 56m), 6. Jake McGing, 7. Nicholas Olsen, 8. Yianni Perkatis, 9. Brendon Santalab (16. Mark Cindric 64m), 10. Lawrence Hanna, 11. Alusine Fofanah, 15. Michael Trajkovski (13. Brendan Hooper 56m)
Yellow Cards: McGing 82m
Red Cards: Nil