Derbies can often be tight, low scoring, dull affairs, but that was not the case as there were five goals in Saturday night’s Sydney derby at Allianz Stadium. Sydney FC ran out the winners, claiming a 3-2 win over Western Sydney Wanderers after being 2-0 down in the first half.
Despite all the excitement in the match as a whole, the opening 15 minutes were proving to be cagey. Sydney were the stronger side in these opening stages as they managed to get three shots away but they were stopped by the Wanderers defense.
While the Wanderers were outplayed in the opening stages they did manage to find the opening goal of the match in the 19th minute. After some good work from Western Sydney they were able to get the ball to Mark Bridge, who controlled and then shot to give the visitors the lead.
That was just the start, as five minutes later the Wanderers were able to double their lead largely thanks to a Sydney FC blunder. Nate Poljak was able to take a touch and shoot but seemed to be denied by Vedran Janjetovic in the Sydney FC goal, only for Janjetovic to send the ball in to his own net, handing Western Sydney a 2-0 lead.
Facing a two goal deficit Sydney FC had to go for the match and they started to really attack after the half-hour mark. Right before half-time Sydney FC really went for it and in the 44th minute they had their goal as Corey Gameiro took possession and hit the perfect shot to make it 2-1 at the break.
The second half saw Sydney FC go for the match and try to get an equalizer and it came just four minutes in to the second half. It came through a defensive blunder as Sasa Ognenovski was able to send a ball around the defender which saw Ante Covic dive, directly out of the path of the ball as it dribbled in to the back of the net.
The physicality really ramped up in the second past as the fouls started flying in from both sides and as the referee started to lose patience and issue cards. In the 65th minute Western Sydney were reduced to ten as Vitor Saba completely clattered Terry Antonis and earned himself a straight red-card.
Facing a man disadvantage, Western Sydney were forced to make changes and adjust to try and stop Sydney FC and they did so for much of the match. In the 79th minute Sydney FC found their equalizer as the ball came to Alex Brosque who buried the chance.
From there Sydney FC were able to easily cruise out the final 11 minutes as Western Sydney could not break down the massed Sydney FC defense. The Wanderers pushed but they couldn’t find the goal as Sydney FC ran down the clock to the comeback 3-2 win.