Thursday, 9 June 2011 10:41 AM
Port Melbourne has handed South Melbourne FC a disappointing Fifth Round Mirabella Cup defeat on Wednesday evening at SS Anderson Reserve. The come-from-behind 2-1 win gave the State League 1 side a thoroughly deserved victory against a disappointing South side that seemed to just go through the motions after taking the lead in the first half.
South were forced to leave out several players for the game, with Jesse Krncevic serving the first of his five-game suspension against Port Melbourne. Also missing were Junior Camargo, Tom Matthews and new signing Steven Weir, with all players being Cup-tied after playing for other clubs earlier in the competition. In better news, Carl Recchia returned to the starting line-up after being out of the team since sustaining a nasty ankle injury against Hume on 17 April.
Both sides started the game conservatively but it was South who drew first blood just short of the half-hour mark when Daniel Vasilevski headed home a great cross from Daniel Dragicevic on the right. Port scored before the half-time break but the goal was disallowed for offside. In the second half, captain-coach Eric Vassiliadis substituted himself onto the field and the game immediately changed. South went forward and blew a glorious three-on-one opportunity to double their lead before Port took the ball down to the other end and equalised with a headed goal similar to Vasilevski’s first half effort for South. From there it was all Port, with the Sharks missing a few open goals with little reply from South as the match headed into extra time.
The score remained at 1-1 throughout a nervy first half of extra time but changed in the 109th minute when Port scored what proved to be the winning goal, again converting a cross that came from the right side. Unfortunately for South, it was nothing more than what the Sharks deserved after clearly being the better side on the night. Despite having 10 minutes to muster up an equalising goal and send the match to a penalty shoot-out, South offered little more than a whimper and the full-time result confirmed its departure from the inaugural Mirabella Cup competition. Full credit must be given to Port Melbourne for defeating a side a division above them. By sitting second on the State League 1 ladder plus knocking off a Victorian Premier League side in the Cup, there is no doubt that the Sharks are well on their way to playing Victorian Premier League football in 2012.
South Melbourne FC must re-group very quickly before jetting off to Singapore on Friday evening before playing S-League side Albirex Niigata at the Jalan Besar Stadium in the First Round of the RHB Singapore Cup on Sunday night.
FINAL SCORE: SOUTH MELBOURNE 1-2 PORT MELBOURNE (HT: 1-0)
SMFC Goal Scorer: Daniel Vasilevski (29′)
South Melbourne FC Line-up:
4. Steven O’DOR, 5. Daniel VASILEVSKI, 6. Steven TOPALOVIC (12. Brad TRELOAR 91′), 8. Carl RECCHIA, 10. Kliment TASESKI (23. Sebastian PETROVIC 71′), 12. Daniel DRAGICEVIC, 16. Trent WATERSON, 18. MARINOS GASPARIS (33. Bobby RUSSELL 81′), 20. Tony LOMBARDI, 21. Zaim ZENELI (GK), 25. KYLE JORYEFF
SMFC Man of the Match: Kliment Taseski
Venue: SS Anderson Reserve
Date: Wednesday 8 June 2011