Western Sydney were left wandering for answers on Saturday night after losing 10-2 to the team they beat earlier in the season.
The Reds broke W-League and club history as they ended United’s drought in Round 12, securing the win they’ve been working towards in a dominant override of the Wanderers in front of a thrilled home crowd.
They managed the win despite being without their captain Stella Rigon and starting goalkeeper Eliza Campbell.
Despite the eventual score line, it was Western Sydney that started the match the better and soon had the lead.
A fumble on the goal line from United keeper Sarah Willacy resulted in an early Helen Petinos goal from a corner, putting the Reds on the back foot in the 17th minute.
For the initial 20 minutes, Western Sydney maintained competitive edge and saw half of the play.
Adelaide youngster Willacy, taking the pitch in place of Eliza Campbell (out with injury), did well to keep Wanderers’ goal count to two after lacking confidence in the first half.
Emily Hodgson also stood out this week for the Reds, proving herself valuable early as she continued to put herself in good offensive positions on the right flank.
Despite having space around her, Adelaide consistently forced play left in the opening half, rarely utilizing the opportunity to attack up the right side.
Matilda Ellie Carpenter was the cause of much excitement on the sideline and proved essential for the Wanderer’s control in the back line and in their counter attack, her confidence and composure on the ball being evident.
Stengel, Fletcher and Halloway were also dangerous.
The Wanderers resorted to their preferred style of playing from the back, however were eventually broken down by the Adelaide side as they were pushed further back in their defensive half as the game progressed.
At the half, Adelaide led the shot count sixteen to four and led the goal count 2-1.
The second half of the match was raining goals for Adelaide United as they heaved on an 8 goal haul, with 6 goals in 25 minutes. Adelaide greatest asset was their ability to attack in numbers, moving up the field as a flock ensuring Western Sydney had too many options to close down.
The Wanderers brought on Jo Burgess in the 53rd minute, with the ex-Matilda having an immediate impact. Halloway made it a 3-2 game when she converted in the 59th minute, cleverly able to dribble the ball past Willacy who was off her line.
After 5 draws and two losses this season, Adelaide United were not content to play for anything less than three points and so proceeded to amplify the pressure and speed of play.
After a competitive opening half, Adelaide started the slaughter in the 65th minute when Jones headed in a Chidiac corner. Four minutes later Quigley also capitalised with a header from a well weighted back post cross.
Chidiac made it 6-2 for the home team in the 75th minute blasting home a right footed shot that Matthyssen-Whyman could not deflect. Monica had to be substituted for United after she went down in Adelaide’s defensive box clutching her ankle. Local Lucy Adamopoulos had her first run on home turf this season, in the first of several substitutions for coach Huss Skenderovic.
Huerta then proceeded to ice the cake for the Adelaide crowd with two goals in two minutes, as a helpless Wanderers defence were caught out again. Huerta’s second goal of the night was arguably the best strike of the evening, an absolute bullet from the left wing that almost blew a hole in the net.
A minute later she sank a left footed shot giving Adelaide a 6 goal lead. The Wanderers were able to take back possession after Huerta’s double, and were unlucky not to catch the Adelaide defence unawares as a Stengel header rocketed an inch over the bar.
The Wanderers lacked cohesion in the second half, and were often slow to react. Adelaide were quick on the ball and the results showed. Jones completed her W-League first hat-trick in the 83rd minute when she stole the ball and dribbled it around Matthssen-Whyman able to finish from an angle. Jones maintained her intensity the entire 90 minutes, and now sits equal fourth with Huerta on the Golden Boot ladder, each with 7.
Substitute Ally Ladas made it an even 10 with 1 minute of regulation time remaining, elevating a shot into the top right corner to gain her first ever W-League goal.
After the win, Adelaide’s goal difference went from -7 to +1, with 24 goals so far this season, only second to Canberra. The only thought to damped the mood of the supporters was that, great a victory as it was, Adelaide are unable to make finals at this late stage of the season.
The Wanderers will need to beat Canberra and Perth in the next two games, as well as have other results from Melbourne City and Brisbane Roar fall their way, to keep their finals hopes alive.
- First win of the season
- First home win in two years
- Biggest margin by Adelaide United
- Turned their 2016-17 goal margin from -7 into +1
- Hat-tricks to Sofia Huerta and Adriana Jones
- Brace to Racheal Quigley
- First W-League goal to Ally Ladas
- Jones and Huerta in the top 5 goalscorers in the league (after round 12).
Adelaide United 10 (Racheal Quigley 19’, 69’, Adriana Jones 28’, 65’, 83’, Sofia Huerta 49’, 77’, 78’, Alexandra Chidiac 74’, Ally Ladas 89’)
Western Sydney Wanderers 2 (Sarah Willacy O.G. 17’, Erica Halloway 59’)
Saturday 14 January 2017
Venue: Elite Systems Football Centre
Referee: Rebecca Durcau
Adelaide United: Sarah Willacy (gk), Emily Hodgson (Kelsey Zafiridis 86’), Monica (Lucy Adamopoulos 77’), Racheal Quigley (Ally Ladas 83’), Sofia Huerta, Adriana Jones, Grace Abbey, Georgia Campagnale, Danielle Colaprico, Katie Naughton, Alexandra Chidiac
Substitutes – Claudia Jenkins (gk)
Western Sydney Wanderers: Jada Whyman (gk), Caitlin Cooper (c), Helen Petinos (Alix Roberts 74’), Kendall Fletcher, Erica Halloway, Katie Stengel, Paige Nielsen, Rachel Lowe (Alyssa Rose 82’), Eliza Ammendolia (Joanne Burgess 54’), Ellie Carpenter, Angelique Hristodoulou
Substitutes – Casey Dumont (gk)
Cautions – Caitlin Cooper 27’, Rachel Lowe 38’