NPL NNSW Round 13 Review

July 5th, 2021

Round Sponsor: Astro Tile Newcastle

 Sproule Sports Focus

Match of the Round

Valentine FC v Adamstown Rosebud

Match postponed due to player availability issues surrounding COVID-19 restrictions.

Lake Macquarie City 2-3 Lambton Jaffas

Lambton maintained their spot in second place on the NPL NNSW table with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Lake Macquarie City on Friday night.

The Jaffas took the lead fortuitously in the seventh minute at Macquarie Field when a blocked clearance fell kindly to Scott Pettit who smashed his finish home at the near post.

The visitors doubled their advantage five minutes later when Pettit added his second of the night, this time after being played in on goal by Ben Hay who had done well to intercept a pass as Lakes attempted to play out from the back.

Shane Pryce and Bobby Naumov’s side looked as though they might cruise to victory but the hosts refused to quit and were handed a lifeline in spectacular fashion just past the half hour mark.

Michael Bru did well to keep the ball in play on the left sideline before cutting inside Riley McNaughton and unleashing a stunning strike past Ben Kennedy into the top right corner to halve the deficit.

Lambton maintained their one-goal lead until the match was turned on its head just before the hour mark when Tom Waller was sent off.

The midfielder was initially shown a yellow card for a challenge in Lakes’ penalty area. After a lengthy delay as the Lakes player was treated for injury, the referee appeared to upgrade the yellow card to a red and sent Waller from the field.

Despite being reduced to 10 men Lambton were able to re-establish their two-goal lead in the 73rd minute.

Pettit was released down the right before finding Kale Bradbery in the penalty area, with the striker showing good composure to control before firing low into the bottom corner.

But again Lakes fought back and made it 3-2 just two minutes later.

Nathan Verity was adjudged to have fouled John Majurovski in the penalty area, with Nick Cowburn stepping up the dispatch the penalty past Kennedy.

Lakes went in search of an equaliser in the final 15 minutes but Lambton held on for the three points to maintain their place in second, one point behind leaders Broadmeadow.

Lakes remain eighth on 11 points.

Lambton will look to add to their six-game unbeaten run when they host a fresh Adamstown Rosebud in their round 14 clash on Saturday, while Lakes will look to bounce back when they host struggling Newcastle Olympic on Saturday evening.

Weston Workers FC v Broadmeadow Magic

Match postponed due to player availability issues surrounding COVID-19 restrictions.

Newcastle Olympic 1-2 Edgeworth FC

Edgeworth consolidated their place in the top five with a 2-1 win over Newcastle Olympic on Sunday.

The reigning premiers took the lead in the seventh minute at Darling Street Oval when New Zealand international Jeremy Brockie unleashed a thunderous first time shot with his left foot from outside the penalty area.

The Eagles doubled their advantage just past the half hour mark when Tyson Jackson did brilliantly to cut in from the right and slide a reverse pass in for Will Bower, who celebrated his return from injury with an assured finish.

While Edgeworth dominated the first half it was Olympic who had the better of the second. But the hosts were unable to pull a goal back until the 87th minute when Jared Muller tapped in after Rhys Cooper did well to get in behind Edgeworth’s defence down the right.

Olympic were unable to find an equaliser, with the defeat their fourth in a row. Joel Griffths’ side remain fifth but have now lost touch with the rest of the top five and are just one point clear of Weston, having played the same number of games as the Bears.

Edgeworth remain fourth but have opened up a five-point gap to Olympic and have a match in hand on the rest of the top five and two games in hand on third-placed Maitland.

The Eagles will look to keep their good form going when they host Charlestown Azzurri on Sunday, while Olympic will be desperate to bounce back when they take on Lake Macquarie City on Saturday evening.

Charlestown Azzurri 2-4 Maitland FC

A James Thompson double helped Maitland maintain the pressure on Broadmeadow and Lambton at the top of the table as the Magpies downed Charlestown Azzurri 4-2 on Sunday.

Thompson’s first came in the 18th minute at Lisle Carr Oval, a stunning angled volley, to give Maitland a 1-0 lead.

Maitland had a second four minutes later when Joseph Melmeth was played in on goal in acres of space before applying a calm finish.

Azzurri, desperate to keep their slender finals hopes alive, were given a lifeline when they pulled a goal back two minutes into the second half when Riley Smith produced a classy finish into the top right corner.

Maitland though restored their two-goal lead in the 65th minute when Flynn Goodman unleashed a goal of the season contender from distance.

Azzurri kept fighting and pulled another goal back 10 minutes later through a Rene Ferguson header.

But Maitland killed off the game with six minutes to play when Thompson added his second.

Picking up a loose ball midway inside his own half, Thompson set off down field, racing past the last Azzurri defender and into the clear before dispatching a classy finish past Nathan Archbold to seal the three points for the Magpies.

Maitland remain third, level on points with Lambton and one point behind leaders Broadmeadow having played a game more. While Charlestown remain seventh on 12 points, four points outside of the top five.

Azzurri take on reigning champions Edgeworth on Sunday, while Maitland face Weston in the Match of the Round on Saturday evening.

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