The A-League festive season got off to a great start for the Western Sydney Wanderers as they will be on top of the league through the festive season. Christmas Eve saw the Wanderers cruise past the Newcastle Jets 2-0 at Pirtek Stadium.
The result continues the Newcastle Jets run as they now have gone almost 400 minutes without scoring. While for the Wanderers their great run continues as they look to win their second premiership trophy, currently sitting clear at the top of the league.
11 minutes in the Jets were lucky to not concede an own goal after a Romeo Castelen shot from outside the area. That shoot took a huge deflection that headed toward goal with Mark Birghitti caught out but went just wide of goal.
Just six minutes later Western Sydney should have had the lead after a shot from Mark Bridge was charged down. That saw the ball fall to Federico Piovoccari at close range but he missed when it seemed harder to miss than score.
The best chances for Newcastle were coming on swift counter attacks, with David Carney being a regular target. Yet Carney could not put his chances away, despite nice work to set him up, Western Sydney’s defence was up to the task.
Western Sydney were unlucky not to be given a golden free kick opportunity in the 25th minute after a handball. Nigel Boogaard was the man responsible as the ball came off his arm but the referee disagreed, waving play on.
In stoppage time the Wanderers finally had their opener thanks to a free-kick from Scott Jamieson. He sent in the free-kick and found a wide open Alberto, which allowed him an easy chance, heading it past Birighitti
The first real chance of the second half came in the 58th minute as David Carney set up a chance for the Jets. Carney sent the ball for Nate Poljak who had a chance to haunt his former side but launched his effort over the bar, keeping it 1-0.
Six minutes later Poljak was involved again as he was able to send a through ball, looking for Milos Tirfunovic. The pass seemed a solid one but it was poorly timed as the offside flag was raised, letting off Western Sydney.
In the 70th minute Western Sydney doubled their lead after some neat work from Mark Bridge set up the goal. Bridge received the ball and turned goalside allowing him to shoot, leaving Birighitti with no chance and scoring his fifth Wanderers goal against the Jets.
That didn’t see the Wanderers content to just hold on to their lead as they pushed, looking for a third goal against a struggling Jets side. That goal didn’t come, partly through poor finishing in the latter stages, but it mattered little as the Wanderers cruised to the 2-0 win.