Canberra moves into the top four

Canberra United has moved into the Westfield W-League top four with a 3-1 victory over the Newcastle Jets in Round Eight on Sunday afternoon.

Canberra United has moved into the Westfield W-League top four with a 3-1 victory over the Newcastle Jets in Round Eight on Sunday afternoon.

At the same venue in which Canberra secured a berth in inaugural grand final last season, their winning ways continued at EnergyAustralia Stadium with two goals in as many minutes in the second half sealing the club-s third win of the season.

The visitors set the pace early knowing that a victory will see them into the top four following the weekend-s previous results and it was striker Tseng Shu O who created the first opportunity when she forced Alison Logue into making a save above her head from distance.

It didn-t take long for Canberra to open the scoring from yet another set piece when midfielder Cian Maciejewski headed home in the tenth minute for her second goal of the season.

Striker Ashleigh Sykes did well to win a free kick in the right corner and the resulting set piece from Ellyse Perry found Maciejewski in front of her defender to glance home a head past the goal line defence and Logue.

Despite the gusty conditions in forty-degree heat, it was Canberra who was again on the attack and had two good chances to extend their lead only minutes later.

A through ball from Hogg found Sykes in behind the defence but couldn-t hit the target with her shot after being forced wide. A quick one-two between Maciejewski and Tseng then nearly had the midfielder on the scoresheet for a second time if she hit the target.

The Jets had a chance of their own when captain Amber Neilson was brought down on the edge by Maciejewski but the resulting free kick was no difficulty for Lydia Williams.

Minutes later, Williams was again called upon after former Novocastrian Emily Van Egmond was dispossessed inside her own 18-yard box and a cross from Tara Andrews saw the Canberra custodian dive and pluck the ball from danger.

Newcastle sparked into the life late in the first half and the heat took a toll on the Canberra side.

The Jet-s Bronte Bates and Andrews both had chances in injury time to level the scores at half time but scrambling defence denied Bates in the goal mouth and Andrews couldn-t hit the target as she tried to curl her shot from post from the right end of the penalty area on the stroke of half time.

Down at the break it was the Jets who came out firing in the opening minutes of the second half as a first time rocket from Neilson at the top of the 18-yard box had Williams diving to her right and got enough of a touch on the shot to deflect it onto the crossbar.

Scores were eventually levelled for the Newcastle Jets ten minutes into the second half when Neilson converted a penalty after Nicole Sykes brought down Andrews in the penalty area despite having her back to goal.

Neither side could create any clear-cut opportunities midway through the second half until Canberra regained the lead through Tseng followed another from Kahlia Hogg only minutes apart.

An Ashleigh Sykes through-ball on a counter -attack put her strike partner Tseng through on goal down the right -hand side before the number ten easily slotted it home inside the far post past Logue to put Canberra back into the lead.

Moments later a flash of brilliance from 15-year old Kahlia Hogg put the result beyond doubt with a stunning shot from 25 meters out couldn-t be stopped by Logue over her head despite getting a hand to it.

Canberra United head coach Ray Junna paid tribute to his team for digging in and working hard in oppressive conditions, while admitting there is plenty of work to do. But he also did say the game-plan would be simple.

“It’s not over yet, there is two games to go,” Junna said.

“We’ve had a hard run in terms of the teams we have played, now we just have to believe in ourselves a bit more against the teams like Newcastle and Adelaide.”

“That’s the sign of a good team when you can get those results against those lower teams and dominate a bit more, but the heat really had an impact today and we’ll use that as an excuse.”

“I think we are definitely a good team, the girls deserve that, but now we call ourselves a good team we have to step up to the plate.”

Match Details:

Newcastle Jets 1 (Neilson 53-)
Canberra United 1 (Maciejewski 9-, Tseng 74-, Hogg 76-)

Newcastle Jets squad: 1. Alison LOGUE, 3. Pelay INGLES, 6. Amber NEILSON(c), 7. Gema SIMON, 8. Bronte BATES, 13. Caitlin JARVIE (9. Kate HENSMAN 64-), 15. Renee CARTWRIGHT, 16. Kristyn PEARCE, 17. Madeline SEARL (11. Carlie IKONOMOU 39-), 18. Leia SMITH, 19. Tara ANDREWS (12. Emma STEWART 83-)

Subs Not Used: 20. Emma-Kate DEWHURST
Yellow Cards: Ingles 87-
Red Cards: Nil

Canberra United squad: 1. Lydia WILLIAMS (c), 3. Bronwyn STUDMAN, 5. Kahlia HOGG, 7. Ellie BRUSH, 8. Emily VAN EGMOND (12. Snez VELJANOVSKA 76-), 10. TSENG Shu O, 11. Cian MACIEJEWSKI, 14. Ashleigh SYKES, 15. Nicole SYKES (2. Rebecca KITING 57-), 16. Ellyse PERRY, 19. Jennifer BISSET (9. Grace GILL 49-),

Subs Not Used: 20. Jocelyn MARA
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil