Photo: RAAF Hawk jet trainers are based at Newcastle [PlessPix]
Newcastle Jets 2-0 Gold Coast United
Newcastle Jets climbed into fifth spot on the A-League ladder at the expense of Melbourne Victory when they downed third-ranked Gold Coast United 2-0 at home at EnergyAustralia Stadium this evening.
It was the Jets’ 8th successive game without defeat.
It took the Jets until the 78th minute to break down Gold Coast, largely due to some brilliant goalkeeping by Glen Moss, who made two outstanding saves in the opening half in one-on-one situations with Francis Jeffers.
Ali Abbas finally beat Moss with 12 minutes remaining, while substitute Sasho Petrovski added a second goal 8 minutes from the end.
Ironically, the Jets were down to 10 men seconds after they scored, captain Ljubo Milicevic collecting a second yellow card after a bad foul on substitute Brad Porter.
Moss also handled first-half efforts from Ruben Zadkovich and Ali Abbas with confidence.
In the 49th minute, Moss made a world-class save from Abbas, turning the Iraqi’s powerful shot against the underside of the bar. The ball bounced down and on the line before spinning back into play.
It was Moss’s third crucial save in the game and showed why he has 9 clean sheets to his name this season.
Jets keeper Matthew Nash also earned his corn with a splendid save in the 70th minute to deny Bruce Djite, who had been put in for the chance by Adama Traore.
The Jets were without Ben Kantarovski, who injured a knee at training and may well require a knee reconstruction. He sees a Sydney surgeon tomorrow.
Gold Coast missed the influence of captain Jason Culina, who was rested, and Robson.
Left-back Anderson seemed a weak link for Gold Coast as Newcastle’s Zadkovich continually broke clear down the right flank and created chances for his team-mates, including Marcello Fiorentini, who blasted one good opening over the bar. The Italian, who has Serie A experience with Lazio, was making a rare start.
Abbas gave his side the lead with 13 minutes remaining. A poor clearance from Steve Pantelidis went straight to Kasey Wehrman, who slipped the ball through for Abbas and he scored with a scorching left-footed drive.
Eight minutes from the end, Moss parried a withering free-kick from Wehrman and then crashed into the post. He seemed disoriented for a split second, and with nearest defender Pantelidis seemingly distracted, Petrovski had time to score with an angled volley from close range to wrap up the three points.
Newcastle Jets: Nash - Elrich, Milicevic, Topor-Stanley, D’Apuzzo - Zadkovich (Petrovski 67), Fiorentini, Wehrman - Jesic, Jeffers, Abbas (Subs not used: Haliti, Patafta, Kennedy)
Booked: Wehrman, Milicevic
Sent off: Milicevic
Gold Coast United: Moss - Pantelidis, Djulbic, Thwaite, Anderson - Brown (Porter 42), Caravella (Lustica 85), Van Den Brink, Traore - Djite, Minniecon (Fitzsimmons 71) (Sub not used: Higgins)
Ref: R Shepheard