NPL SENIOR NEWS:: ROUND 25
PVSC 1 VS PORT MELBOURNE 1
Sharks Level In Fiery Encounter
Sharks Level In Fiery Encounter
NPL SENIOR NEWS | MATCH REPORT ROUND 25
By Brandon Galgano (@Bgalgano94)
Pascoe Vale and Port Melbourne Sharks played out an entertaining 1-1 draw on Friday night at Hosken Reserve, with the result all but securing the Sharks’ survival’s in the NPL with one round remaining.
An early goal for the hosts from veteran playmaker Michael Ferrante was cancelled out by a second-half Milos Ridesic header, before Port Melbourne midfielder Nicky McNamara was sent off for a reckless challenge late in the game.
It was the visitors who very nearly had the first sight on goal as Kamal Ibrahim was played through in the opening minutes with just ‘keeper Yaren Sozer to beat, but despite looking level the referee blew for offside to the dismay of Port coach Eric Vassiliadis.
That frustration was compounded just moments later as the hosts took the lead through Ferrante in the 13th minute.
The former Melbourne Victory midfielder found space inside the area before slotting past the onrushing Stjepan Gal to open the scoring.
Port Melbourne very nearly equalised just seconds after the restart, but for a brilliant save from Sozer who was fantastic all night.
Young midfielder Stefan Nigro was the next to go close for the visitors, but his left-footed effort sailed just over the crossbar from 25 yards out.
Port Melbourne continued to pile on the pressure though with Zois Galanopoulos getting clear of his marker inside the area, but his effort on goal was well smothered by Sozer in the 31st minute.
With Pascoe Vale struggling to maintain possession late in the first half and early on in the second, it allowed Port Melbourne to push forward in numbers.
It was the Sharks who very nearly equalised through Ibrahim in the 51st minute, but Sozer once again came to the rescue with a fantastic save in a one-on-one situation.
Port Melbourne finally found the equaliser in the 65th minute through Ridesic.
The young centre-back got on the end of a fantastic cross to the back post to head home into the top corner, leaving Sozer with no chance.
But just as it seemed that Port might be able to steal a second, the match took a major turn with McNamara sent off for a reckless challenge on Mark Pistininzi in the 78th minute, with the midfielder shown a straight red card.
Despite having an extra man for the last 12 minutes the hosts simply couldn’t get though a sturdy Sharks defence with the scores finishing level at 1-1.
Pascoe Vale coach Vitale Ferrante was disappointed that his side let the game slip away after being ahead for so long, but lauded the performance of his young goalkeeper.
“Look in summary I thought the draw was probably a fair result,” Ferrante said.
“I was happy with the start and we got a goal early which was positive, but I was disappointed with how we begun to just try and preserve that lead instead of keeping on playing and in the end I think it cost us.
“I’ve been saying this from when we signed him (Sozer) but I think that he has a future much higher than the NPL.
“He was strong in the air and made a few fantastic saves and I think he has a really bright future ahead of him.’’
Port Melbourne boss Eric Vassilladis believed his side fully deserved to win the match and couldn’t be prouder of his young team.
“I don’t think it was an even game at all tonight and to be honest we played some outstanding stuff,’’ Vassiliadis said.
“For a young team, in the predicament we are in, to come to this ground and to be brave and to dominate in possession and to create the chances we did, honestly it makes me so proud of this group.”
Pascoe Vale 1 (Ferrante 13’) drew with Port Melbourne Sharks 1 (Ridesic 65’) at Hosken Reserve.
Pascoe Vale: 1 Yaren SOZER (GK), 2 Adrian TALARICO, 3 Nathen MEGIC, 4 Tomislav MILARDOVIC, 8 Joseph YOUSSEF (C), 9 Jake NAKIC, 15 Mark PISTININZI, 16 Marco SANTILLI (13 Matthew LAZARIDES 70’), 17 Evan KARAVITIS, 21 Michael FERRANTE, 22 Carl RECCHIA
Unused substitutes: 21 Stefaan SARDELIC, 6 Lindsay HENDERSON, 12 Eli LUTTMER, 18 Anthony TARANTO
Yellow cards: Santilli 19’, Nakic 33’, Milardovic 87’
Red cards: None
Port Melbourne Sharks: 22 Stjepan GAL (GK), 20 Milos RIDESIC, 23 Conor REDDAN, 26 Lambros HONOS, 7 Amadu KOROMA, 19 Nicky MCNAMARA, 8 Zois GALANOPOULOS (11 Nicholas KROUSORATIS 54’) 6 Chris GROSSMAN (C), 14 Kamal IBRAHIM (10 Luka PRELEVIC 70’), 3 James RICCOBENE, 15 Stefan NIGRO
Unused substitutes: 1 Adam HREHORESIN (GK), 4 Timothy PATON, 27 Andrew MILICEVIC
Yellow cards: Ibrahim 69’
Red cards: McNamara 78’