Auckland City too good
Northern premier league leaders Auckland City showed their class as they eased to a 3-0 win over Melville United.
It was Melville’s first home loss since April 2 but nobody could deny Auckland were well worth their win, and could have easily extended their margin. They were the best team to have visited Gower this season by some margin.
Melville entered the match in something of a 4-1-4-1 formation, with Joel McMullan getting his first start of the season up front after six runs as sub, and Liam Molloy also starting.
Melville were without top goalscorer Jama Boss, who has transferred to St Albans FC in the Melbourne State League, he has been replaced in the Melville squad by Kieran Richards, who has returned from the US after a stay in MIQ, and he came on in the second half.
Auckland had a 1-0 lead at halftime thanks to a penalty earned just before the break when Logan Wisnewski brought down Mohamed Awad.
Angus Kilkolly made it 2-0 in the 57th minute and sub Dylan Manickum grabbed a late third after an Auckland free kick had rebounded off the post and his reactions were better than the Melville defenders.
Melville coach Sam Wilkinson had no complaints about Auckland’s victory, though was slightly disappointed his team hadn’t had more of a crack early on.
“It was a good trot for the younger players against the best squad in the league,” he said.
Aaron Scott was named player of the day for Melville, while Max Tommy had another fine game.
Auckland coach Jose Figuera was delighted with his team’s performance.
“I though we were very good today on one of the best surfaces in the league and in front of a good crowd,” he said.
Melville have dropped to fifth in the league ahead of an away game against Auckland United – 1-0 winners over Birkenhead – on Saturday.
Melville reserves lead 1-0 and 2-1, but couldn’t hold on against Auckland United and lost 5-2 in the final 10 minutes.
Melville: Max Tommy, Raheem Hunter-Ali, Aaron Scott, Campbell Brown, Quinton Kipara, Logan Wisnewski, Liam Hayes, Liam Molloy (Gerson Lagos), Lachie McIsaac (Jordan Shaw), Joel McMullan (Kieran Richards).
PHOTO CREDIT: Marc McMullan