Adelaide United were unable to hold off the reigning champions, Campbelltown City, in a 1-3 defeat in Round 4 of the PlayStation 4 National Premier Leagues at Steve Woodcock Sports Centre on Saturday.
Reds goal keeper, Isaac Richards was a standout, making several spectacular saves, and denying two penalties, however, the firepower of Red Devil’s Adam Piscioneri and Thomas Strain was enough for the three points.
Liam Mccabe got one back for Adelaide United, late into the second half, but it couldn’t spark a comeback for the visitors.
United Head Coach, Huss Skenderovic, made three changes to his starting XI, with Richards returning from injury, as well as Zak Waters and Christopher Vivian, in a bid to create some consistency within the squad.
It took only 5 minutes for the hosts to take the lead, when Jake Halliday was able to deliver to Piscioneri, only for him to slot past Richards.
In the 12th minute, Campbelltown were awarded a penalty, and an almost certain second goal, Richards was able to collect calmly, with no real threat from Strain.
Apostolos Stamatelopoulos was determined to equalise, with a perfect opportunity, but his drive towards goal caught the wrong angle and missed the target.
An avid Lui Ditroia of Campbelltown had two chances, but defender Paul Wilson slid in accurately to clear the ball, and Richards made a diving save to maul the ball away after a strike in the 31st minute.
An involuntary handball in the box awarded Campbelltown with their second penalty of the match, in which Strain was able to convert.
Following a Reds’ corner, Campbelltown keeper, Nicholas Harpas latched onto the corner kick, and brought it up field for Strain to collect, and chip over Richards for their third goal in the first half.
It was an improved second half tor Adelaide, as they limited Campbelltown their chances. Ryan Strain and Mccabe linked up five minutes into the half, but their efforts were thwarted.
A Campbelltown corner resulted in their third penalty, when Anthony Ture was brought down in the area. But Richards showed off his bravery once again, denying Strain his hat-trick.
Skenderovic looked to his bench, to bring on Pacifique Niyongabire, who had two quick-fire and close chances on goal.
It was Mccabe in the 84th minute who fought through a tight defence to find space and knock it past Harpas, but their better half was not enough to cause an upset for the hosts.
Campbelltown City – 0
Adelaide United – 3 (Aladin Irabona, Ninko Beric, Peter Katsambis)