South Melbourne FC

The Blue and White Forever



By John Kyrou (Photo by Cindy Nitsos)

South Melbourne FC returned to winning ways thanks to a comfortable 4-0 win over Werribee City at Lakeside Stadium on Sunday evening. The win was set up in the first half thanks to a penalty from Jamie Reed and a double from Milos Lujic and was completed early in the second half thanks to a cool finish from Nick Epifano.

Chris Taylor sprung a surprise by dropping first-choice goalkeeper Jason Saldaris to the bench and replacing him with Chris Maynard in the starting eleven. Maynard’s only other appearance this season was in the Dockerty Cup tie against Berwick City on Wednesday 7 May. As expected, Iqi Jawadi returned to the starting eleven after serving a one-match suspension against Bentleigh and Reed also returned to the starting line-up. Leigh Minopoulos and Mathew Theodore began on the substitutes’ bench.

The home side began the match strongly and almost opened the scoring from Reed’s free kick that went just wide of Tommy Dunn’s goal. The Werribee goalkeeper then had his defender Ryan Filipovic to thank when he cleared Tyson Holmes’ chipped effort off the line and out for a corner. On the half hour, Epifano was put through on goal and was brought down by Dunn as he took the ball around the goalkeeper. Reed stepped up and buried the spot kick past Dunn for his ninth League goal of the season and his tenth goal across all competitions this year. Lujic then doubled South’s advantage in the 40th minute when he was put through and he coolly struck the ball across Dunn and into the bottom corner of the net. South’s third arrived just shy of half time when Epifano pounced on Milan Savic’s defensive error and cut the ball back for an unmarked Lujic to score at the back post for his second goal of the night, his 18th League goal this season and his 19th goal across all competitions this year.

The scoring was completed after 56 minutes when Epifano got behind the Werribee defence and hit a nice finish that curled across Dunn, off the back post and into the back of the net. Epifano should have scored a second goal later in the half after going through one-on-one with Dunn but the ball hit the post and stayed out, denying South a fifth goal on the night. Post-match, Taylor said that “we stuck to our guns early on in the first half tonight…we spoke about not being like we were against Bentleigh, where we started well but then sort of fell in a bit of a hole.” Despite being pleased to win the three points, Taylor was disappointed that the score line wasn’t greater. “We probably should have had another four or five tonight… had we done that it would have been good for goal difference (Oakleigh currently have a +5 lead on goal difference). For me, that was the disappointing aspect of tonight.”

It was further good news in the NPL 20s as South Melbourne smashed Werribee City 5-0, with the goal scorers being Stefan Valentini (x2), Andy Kecojevic, Stefan Zinni and Angel Taravillo. The NPL 20s have enjoyed a fantastic week, beating Pascoe Vale 3-0 last Sunday, beating Bentleigh 4-0 mid-week and then defeating Werribee 5-0 on Sunday.

South’s next match is against Dandenong Thunder at George Andrews Reserve next Saturday 16 August, with kick-off at 7PM.


Goal Scorers:
1-0: Jamie Reed (32’p)
2-0: Milos Lujic (40′)
3-0: Milos Lujic (43′)
4-0: Nick Epifano (56′)

South Melbourne FC:
21. Chris MAYNARD (GK), 2. Tim MALA, 4. Michael EAGAR (C), 7. Nick EPIFANO, 9. Milos LUJIC, 10. Tyson HOLMES (27. Leigh MINOPOULOS 65′), 11. Brad NORTON, 12. Iqi JAWADI, 14. James MUSA (25. Shaun TIMMINS 83’), 17. Jamie REED (8. Mathew THEODORE 83′), 77. Stephen HATZIKOSTAS.

Werribee City:
1. Tommy DUNN (GK), 4. Ryan FILIPOVIC, 5. Evan BATSIS (11. Dom MARAFIOTI 77′), 6. Anthony RAGUSA, 7. Simon ZAPPIA, 8. Simon TOLLI, 9. Devon BONNE, 10. Damir MARUSIC (17. Matthew CUNDARI 72′), 13. Milan SAVIC (26. Liam BRIAN 56′), 14. Bobby VIDANOVSKI, 43. Steve CUDRIG.

SMFC Man of the Match: Iqi Jawadi
Venue: Lakeside Stadium
Date: Sunday 10 August 2014

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