Match Report: South Adelaide 1-2 MetroStars
Strong Performance leaves MetroStars with first league win of 2021
The Round 3 match between South Adelaide and MetroStars was played on a gorgeous Saturday afternoon at O’Sullivan Beach Centre, home of South. The Panthers headed into the game on the back of 2 wins to start the season, 2-0 away to Adelaide United, followed by a 3-1 win at home to Adelaide Olympic. MetroStars had a slightly more challenging start to the season which saw them have a draw and a loss. A win was needed to kick start their campaign for 2021.
MetroStars got off to a strong start in the game when Esposito put a long range effort just over the crossbar in the first minute. For the first quarter of an hour it was end to end football with both sides engaging in a very physical affair.
MetroStars again went close when Christian Esposito put a close range free kick just wide of the left hand post.
South Adelaide didn’t have their first real chance until the 22nd minute when they swung in a corner that was parried away by Jackson O’Donnell, however it landed at the Panthers feet abd the shot was flashed wide of the goal.
In the 30th minute Panthers midfielder Masaya Sasaki found himself in space through the midfield and he put through Jonathon Rideout who put the ball past the advancing keeper which gave them a 1-nil lead with an hour left in the game. A minute later it looked like they were in again when brother Alexander Rideout put in a cross that challenged the goalkeeper, forcing him to parry to Jonathon, however, his shot was blocked by desperate defence from MetroStars.
The pressure continued on the MetroStars, until seemingly out of nowhere Kalilou Kamara crossed a ball in from the right baseline which Rocky Callisto deflected past the goalkeeper, levelling the scores.
In the 39th minute MetroStars had another great chance when a corner was swung in for Christian Esposito who hit the crossbar with his headed chance.
The teams headed into half time level at 1 a piece. The home side had 5 shots, 2 of which were on target. MetroStars had 7 shots, with 3 being on target, and also conceded a mammoth 12 free kicks.
The second half started strong for the away side with captain Anthony Solagna scoring 2 minutes into the second half. This put the away side in a strong position for the rest of the game.
In the 51st minute they had another strong chance when Kamara had his header blocked from an on target shot.
However, a minute later South Adelaide thought they had struck back, only for the Assistant Referee’s flag to be up after Jonathon Rideout put a shot past keeper O’Donnell. A good luck sign for the visitors.
The chances kept coming for the visitors with multiple attempts on goal either saved or being put wide. In the 65th minute, substitute Ari Piol had a free header from the 6 yard box however was unable to direct it on target.
Later in the half, there was a controversial moment when a Panthers striker was brought down at the very edge of the box by Kamara. The referee decided the challenge was just outside the box, a very close call indeed!
The ensuing free kick was blasted over the goals.
The Panthers kept on attacking, another huge chance when Alexander Rideout received a long throw that was back headed at goal. O’Donnell could only parry the ball away, leaving the ball for Sasaki which was blocked from desperate defending from MetroStars. They were eager to hold on.
In the 91st minute MetroStars should’ve put the game to bed when Dylan Smith ran straight through the Panthers midfield then lay it off to Alessio Melisi to have a free shot. It was firstly blocked by the defender, only for the second shot to dribble wide of the goals.
2 minutes later they had another strong chance when the attack found themselves in a 4 on 2. Smith squared the ball to Piol who put the ball wide of a completely empty goal. MetroStars were determined to make the game a nail biter.
Finally, 6 minutes into added time the referee brought the game to an end, confirming a first win of the season to MetroStars. The statistics show they dominated the game, 18 shots to 9, and 9 corners to 5.
This will leave them with lots of confidence heading into their Indigenous Themed game against Croydon on Friday 7th May at TK Shutter Reserve.