AFC Champions League 07

¤ 04 March 2007: Sydney FC depart for China before their first AFC Champions League match against Shanghai Shenhua. Sydney leave behind Dean Bouzanis, Jeremy Brockie, Terry McFlynn, Jacob Timpano and Ruben Zadkovich, whilst visa issues for Mark Milligan and Nikolai Topor-Stanley (with the Olyroos in Dubai) mean they will join up with the team one day late.[SFC][SMH]
¤ 06 March 2007: New Zealand international Jeremy Brockie is released form his contract by Sydney FC for “personal reasons”.[SFC]
¤ 07 March 2007: Sydney FC vs Shanghai Shenhua United FC, Yuanshen Stadium, 7:00pm (AFC Champions League – Matchday 1)
An historic match for Sydney FC, scoring the first goal and taking the first win for an Australian club side in the AFC Champions League. Two top-drawer first-half goals put Sydney in the box seat, though a late goal to Shanghai gave the home team a chance.[AFC][AFC]
Sydney FC 2 (Corica 8′, Talay 23′) def. Shanghai Shenhua 1 (Xie 78′)
Sydney FC: 1 Clint Bolton (gk), 2 Iain Fyfe, 4 Mark Rudan (c), 6 Ufuk Talay, 7 Robbie Middleby (5 Noel Spencer 69′), 9 David Zdrilic, 11 Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 12 David Carney, 14 Alex Brosque, 16 Mark Milligan
Shanghai Shenhua: 1 Wang Dalei (gk), 4 Chang Lin, 5 Du Wei, 8 Sergio Blanco, 9 Diego Alonso, 10 Fernando Correa (16 Yu Tao 46′), 17 Sun Ji, 18 Zheng Kewei (24 Li Gang 39′), 21 Jiang Kun (c; Xie Hui 71′), 27 Mao Jianqing, 28 Qu Shaoyan
Cautions: Talay 24′, Carney 29′, Milligan 80′

¤ 14 March 2007: Sydney FC vs Wollongong Wolves, Judy Masters Oval, 7:00pm (Friendly)
A third trial game against state league opposition sees the debuts of American Michael Enfield and East Timorese Alfredo Estevez, the former scoring an impressive goal from midfield.[SFCU][SMH][FS]
Sydney FC 3 (Zdrilic 24′, Enfield 63′, Glavas 68′) def. Wollongong Wolves 2 (Conda 42′, Swinton 77′)
Sydney FC: Clint Bolton (gk; Dean Bouzanis), Iain Fyfe, Nikolas Tsattalios, Mark Rudan (Alfredo Estevez), Noel Spencer, Ufuk Talay (Luka Glavas), Robbie Middleby, David Zdrilic (Michael Enfield), Steve Corica (Terry McFlynn), David Carney, Alex Brosque
Wollongong: Zlatko Josevski (gk; Joao Oliviera), Matt Hunter, Wayne Heath, Michael West, Dustin Wells, Chimaobi Nwaogazi, Ivan Vojdovic, Danial Cummins, Ballamodou Conde, Ben Blake, Osagie Ederaro, Josh Swinton, Brett Farnsworth, Karouna Michael, Jacob Miller, Dale Blundell, Matt Harvey
Cautions: Spencer 51′

¤ 15 March 2007: The Sydney FC awards for the 2006-07 season are announced. Player of the year: Robbie Middleby; Defender of the year: Mark Rudan; Midfielder of the year: Steve Corica; Forward of the year: Alex Brosque; Members’ player of the year: Steve Corica; Chairman’s award: Anthony Crea; Goal of the year: Sasho Petrovski, Golden boot: Sasho Petrovski.[SFC]
¤ 21 March 2007: Sydney FC vs Urawa Red Diamonds, Aussie Stadium, 8:00pm (AFC Champions League – Matchday 2)
Sydney FC took a remarkable 2-0 lead early against one of Asia’s biggest clubs, but Clint Bolton drops a harmless-looking cross at the feet of Yuchiro Nagai for the Reds to equalise and leave the two clubs equal at the top of Group E. Mark Milligan’s yellow card late in the first half means he will be suspended for Sydney’s away match against Persik Kediri.[AFC][AFC]
Sydney FC 2 (Carney 1′, Talay 22′ pen) drew Urawa Red Diamonds 2 (Ponte 30′, Nagai 54′)
Sydney FC: 1 Clint Bolton (gk), 2 Iain Fyfe, 4 Mark Rudan (c), 6 Ufuk Talay, 7 Robbie Middleby (8 Ruben Zadkovich 43′), 9 David Zdrilic (15 Terry McFlynn 46′), 10 Steve Corica, 11 Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 12 David Carney, 14 Alex Brosque, 16 Mark Milligan
Urawa Red Diamonds: 23 Ryota Tsuzuki (gk), 2 Keisuki Tsuboi, 4 Marcus Tulio Tanaka, 5 Nene (17 Makoto Hasebe 38′), 6 Nobuhisa Yamada (c; 14 Tadaaki Hirakawa 61′ (3 Hajime Hosogai 85′)), 8 Shnji Ono, 9 Yuchiro Nagai, 10 Robson Ponte, 13 Keita Suzuki, 21 Washington, 22 Yuki Abe
Cautions: Milligan 44′, Tanaka 65′, Hasebe 70′, Topor-Stanley 75′

¤ 31 March 2007: Shareholder Peter Turnbull is voted off the seven-man Sydney FC board, having reportedly fallen out with majority owner Frank Lowy. Turnbull suggests he will be involved in the creation of a western Sydney team in the future.[SMH]
¤ 04 April 2007: Sydney FC vs Marconi Stallions, Marconi Stadium, 7:00pm (Friendly)
Replacing a cancelled trial match against Mt Pritchard, Sydney FC score all of their goals in the second half, with American triallist Michael Enfield having a hand in all three.[SFCU]
Sydney FC 3 (Topor-Stanley 48′, Glavas 65′, Casey ~85′) def. Marconi Stallions 0
Sydney FC: Clint Bolton (gk; Dean Bouzanis 46′), Nikolas Tsattalios (Iain Fyfe 46′), Mark Rudan (Nikolai Topor-Stanley 46′), Noel Spencer, Ufuk Talay (Mark Milligan 46′), Ruben Zadkovich, David Zdrilic (Luka Glavas 46′), Steve Corica (Michael Enfield 46′), David Carney (Adam Casey 46′), Alex Brosque, Terry McFlynn
¤ 07 April 2007: Sydney FC announce the signing of US midfielder Michael Enfield (LA Galaxy) on a two-year deal after he impressed in his two trial match appearances for the club. He is ineligible to represent Sydney in the group stage of the AFC Champions League though.[SFC]
¤ 11 April 2007: Sydney FC’s match against Persik Kediri is postponed for one day due to the heavily waterlogged pitch at Manahan Stadium in Solo City. Officials’ attempts to remove the surface water with what looked like a vacuum cleaner were futile. Set to be played at 3:00pm, the match will now be played in the morning heat at 10:30am.[AFC]
¤ 12 April 2007: Sydney FC vs Persik Kediri, Manahan Stadium, 10:30am (AFC Champions League – Matchday 3)
Sydney FC again take an early lead but fail to capitalise, clearly stuggling in the humidity of Central Java. Alex Brosque has an excellent opportunity to put Sydney 2-1 up on the half-hour, but goes down under the slightest contact when one-on-one with the goalkeeper. Ruben Zadkovich’s second yellow leaves Sydney with ten men for the final 30 minutes, and they are unable to find the equaliser.[AFC][AFC]
Persik Kediri 2 (Aris Budi 25′, Budi Sudarsono 70′) def. Sydney FC 1 (Corica 8′)
Sydney FC: 1 Clint Bolton (gk), 2 Iain Fyfe, 4 Mark Rudan (c), 6 Ufuk Talay, 8 Ruben Zadkovich, 9 David Zdrilic (19 Luka Glavas 74′), 10 Steve Corica, 11 Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 12 David Carney (3 Nikolas Tsattalios 84′), 14 Alex Brosque, 15 Terry McFlynn (18 Adam Casey 65′)
Persik Kediri: 1 Kurnia Sandy (gk), 3 Erol Iba (2 Yohanes Yantara 86′), 4 Aris Indarto (23 Restu Setyo Kartiko 64′), 6 Zianuri, 7 Bertha Yuana Putra (13 Budi Sudarsono 68′), 10 Christian Gonzales, 12 Harianto (c), 18 Aris Budi Prasetiya, 25 Khusnul Yuli Kurniawan, 28 Ronald Fagundes, 30 Danilo Fernando
Cautions: Zadkovich 18′, Zainuri 30′, Carney 45+1′, Zadkovich 61′, Danilo 66′, Budi Sudarsono 70′
Sent off: Zadkovich 61′

¤ 17 April 2007: Midfielder David Carney re-signs with Sydney FC for a further two years, the deal ensuring Carney will remain with the club until the end of the 2008-09 A-League season.[SFC]
twerk vines ¤ 18 April 2007: Sydney FC vs Bankstown City Lions, Jensen Park, 7:00pm (Friendly)
Another trial match against state league opposition sees Bankstown provide perhaps Sydney FC’s stiffest challenge yet, with two goals coming via a Lions defensive blunder and a close onside call, while Bankstown’s Nahuel Arrarte beat Dean Bouzanis with a stunning volley. Englishman David Swanick featured at right-back in the second half, with French left-back Pierre Demon coming for his second trial.[SFCU]
Sydney FC 2 (Brosque ~13′, Carney ~77′) def. Bankstown City 1 (Nahuel Arrarte ~81′)
Sydney FC: Dean Bouzanis (gk), Iain Fyfe, Nikolas Tsattalios (Pierre Demon), Noel Spencer, Ufuk Talay (David Carney), Robbie Middleby (David Swanick), Steve Corica (Jacob Timpano), Alex Brosque (Jason Kencevski), Terry McFlynn, Adam Casey, Luka Glavas (David Zdrilic)
¤ 23 April 2007: The draw for the 2007-08 A-League season is released, with Sydney FC set to play against the Central Coast Mariners in the first match of the season. The Pre-season Cup draw is also released, with Sydney FC in Group B alongside Queensland Roar, Central Coast Mariners and new club Wellington Phoenix. Sydney’s only home match of the group stage, against Central Coast, will be played in Canberra.[A-L][A-L]
¤ 23 April 2007: Branko Culina signs a two-year deal as manager of Sydney FC, having lead the club to one win, one draw and one loss in the AFC Champions League as interim manager.[SFC]
¤ 25 April 2007: Sydney FC vs Persik Kediri, Parramatta Stadium, 8:00pm (AFC Champions League – Matchday 4)
Branko Culina celebrates his first match as permanent manager with a 3-0 win to put Sydney FC one point behind Urawa Red Diamonds in Group E. After a Mark Rudan goal was disallowed in the first half, Sydney come to life in the second stanza as Steve Corica scores a brace.[AFC][AFC]
Sydney FC 3 (Corica 54′, 90′, Brosque 73′) def. Persik Kediri 0
Sydney FC: 1 Clint Bolton (gk), 2 Iain Fyfe, 4 Mark Rudan (c), 6 Ufuk Talay, 7 Robbie Middleby, 9 David Zdrilic (18 Adam Casey 76′), 10 Steve Corica, 11 Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 14 Alex Brosque, 15 Terry McFlynn, 16 Mark Milligan
Persik Kediri: 1 Kurnia Sandy (gk; 27 Wahyudi 64′), 3 Erol Iba, 4 Aris Indarto, 6 Zainuri, 8 Jefri Dwi Hadi (7 Bertha Yuana Putra 79′), 10 Christian Gonzales, 12 Harianto (c), 13 Budi Sudarsono, 18 Aris Budi Prasetiya, 25 Khusnul Yuli Kurniawan, 28 Ronald Fagundes
Cautions: Harianto 5′, Corica 24′, Zainuri 36′, Fagundes 60′, Middleby 84′

¤ 02 May 2007: Sydney FC vs Penrith Nepean United, Credit Union Australia Stadium, 7:00pm (Friendly)
A crowd in excess of 4,000 (reportedly the biggest for football at the venue in “well over a decade”) saw the locals take the match to Sydney FC, who were ahead 2-0 at half-time via David Zdrilic. With several players being rested or in camp with the Olyroos, Branko Culina also decides to play the final ten minutes with ten men, taking Ufuk Ta

lay off the field without a replacement.[SFCU][PNU]
Sydney FC 2 (David Zdrilic [2]) drew Penrith Nepean United 2 (Danny Wells pen, Brad Boardman)
Sydney FC: Clint Bolton (gk; Dean Bouzanis 46′), Iain Fyfe, Noel Spencer, Ufuk Talay (unreplaced ~80′), Robbie Middleby, Ruben Zadkovich, David Zdrilic, Steve Corica (Pierre Demon 46′), Nikolai Topor-Stanley, Alex Brosque (Luka Glavas 46′), Jacob Timpano
¤ 09 May 2007: Sydney FC vs Shanghai Shenhua United FC, Aussie Stadium, 7:30pm (AFC Champions League – Matchday 5)
An extremely frustrating stalemate for Sydney FC, failing to capitalise on the 3-3 draw played out between Urawa Red Diamonds and Persik Kediri in the other Group E match. Shanghai Shenhua’s goalkeeper makes several exceptional saves, whilst Ufuk Talay hits the crossbar from a wrongly-awarded penalty kick on 27 minutes. Shanghai Shenhua’s tactics of time wasting clearly got to the Sydney FC players, although Shanghai manager Osvaldo Giminez reportedly later apologised for his players’ actions.[AFC][AFC][A-L]
Sydney FC 0 drew Shanghai Shenhua 0
Sydney FC: 1 Clint Bolton (gk), 2 Iain Fyfe, 4 Mark Rudan (c), 6 Ufuk Talay (18 Adam Casey 73′), 7 Robbie Middleby, 9 David Zdrilic (19 Luka Glavas 81′), 10 Steve Corica, 11 Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 12 David Carney, 14 Alex Brosque, 16 Mark Milligan
Shanghai Shenhua: 12 Zhang Chen (gk), 2 Yao Lijun (25 Yin Xifu 83′), 3 Dong Yang, 5 Du Wei (c), 6 Liu Zhiqing, 7 Xiao Zhanbo, 8 Sergio Blanco, 9 Diego Alonso, 10 Fernando Correa (26 Wang Hongliang 58′), 15 Wang Ke (18 Zheng Kewei 65′), 24 Li Gang
Cautions: Milligan 17′, Middleby 36′, Correa 38′, Blanco 47′, Rudan 66′

¤ 16 May 2007: Sydney FC vs Malaysia national team, Sydney United Sports Centre, 7:30pm (Friendly)
Sydney FC becomes the first A-League club to play against a national team, facing the touring Malaysian side who are set to co-host the AFC Asian Cup in July. Two headed goals from David Carney crosses win the match for Sydney, who again play the final minutes with ten men after Branko Culina took off defender Nikolas Tsattalios.[SFC][SFCU]
Sydney FC 2 (Spencer 20′, Zdrilic 35′) def. Malaysia 0
Sydney FC: Clint Bolton (gk; Dean Bouzanis 46′), Iain Fyfe (Nathan Sherlock), Nikolas Tsattalios (unreplaced ~80′), Mark Rudan (Pierre Demon 46′), Noel Spencer, Ruben Zadkovich, David Zdrilic (Luka Glavas), Steve Corica (Robbie Middleby ~46′), David Carney, Alex Brosque, Terry McFlynn
Malaysia squad: Azizon Kadir, V. Thirumurugan, K. Nanthakumar, Mohamad Kaironnisam Shahabuddin, Mohd Fauzie Nan, Eddy Helmi Abdul Manan, Mohd Ivan Yusoff, Norhafiz Zamani Misbah, Muhammad Shukor Adan, Mohd Safee Mohd Sali, Hairuddin Omar, Mohd Suffian Abdul Rahman, Ronny Harun, Rezal Zambery Yahya, Nazrulerwan Makmor, Mohd Hamzani Omar, Mohd Fadzli Saari, Mohamad Hardi Jaafar, Mohd Norfarhan Muhammad, Ahmad Fauzi Saari, Akmal Rizal Ahmad Rakhli, Shahrulnizam Mustapa

¤ 23 May 2007: Sydney FC vs Urawa Red Diamonds, Saitama Stadium, 7:30pm (AFC Champions League – Matchday 6)
Requiring victory to progress past the group stage, Sydney find solid resistance in the Red Diamonds who seemed happy to settle for a draw. Sydney’s best opportunity fell for David Zdrilic, who put his free header tamely into the ground on 35 minutes.[AFC][AFC]
Sydney FC 0 drew Urawa Red Diamonds 0
Sydney FC: 1 Clint Bolton (gk), 2 Iain Fyfe, 4 Mark Rudan (c), 6 Ufuk Talay (18 Adam Casey 70′), 8 Ruben Zadkovich, 9 David Zdrilic, 10 Steve Corica, 11 Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 12 David Carney, 14 Alex Brosque, 16 Mark Milligan
Urawa Red Diamonds: 23 Ryota Tsuzuki (gk), 2 Keisuke Tsuboi, 5 Nene, 6 Nobuhisa Yamada (c), 8 Shinji Ono (9 Yuchiro Nagai 85′), 10 Robson Ponte (30 Masayuki Okana 90′), 13 Keita Suzuki, 16 Takahito Soma (17 Makoto Hasebe 62′), 20 Satoshi Horinouchi, 21 Washington, 22 Yuki Abe
Cautions: Rudan 19′, Washington 43′, Hironouchi 82′

¤ 02 June 2007: American Express becomes the “official card” of Sydney FC.[SFC]
¤ 22 June 2007: Sydney FC announce the signing of striker Brendon Santalab (Ujpest), who has previously played under Branko Culina at Sydney United.[SFC]
¤ 25 June 2007: Goalkeeper Ivan Necevski (Blacktown City Demons) joins Sydney FC on a two-year contract. Necevski appeared for the New Zealand Knights in the 2006 Pre-Season Cup and Newcastle United Jets in the 2006-07 A-League season.[SFC]