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Match report: Sydney FC vs Kaya FC–Iloilo – 09/03/22

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Discuss the match here.

The scoreline recorded a comfortable win for Sydney FC on an uncomfortable night for everyone involved. The Sky Blues beat Kaya FC–Iloilo 5-nil and advanced to the Group Stage of the AFC Champions League.

Sydney struggled to score in a first half of surprisingly good weather, leading 1-nil at half-time after squandering several good chances. The floodgates and then the heavens opened in the second half, and Bobo and Adam Le Fondre scored a brace each to confirm Sydney’s superiority.

Goals for the strikers, a clean sheet, minutes for returning youth such as Patrick Yazbek and Pat Wood, and a clean bill of health ticked all the boxes for Steve Corica. The heavy pitch and, in the second half, sheets of sleeting rain, made it a tricky encounter for the players and a test for everyone involved.

Key moments:

  • 3: A cross from Max Burgess was met by Trent Buhagier, but his effort was saved by the impressive Kaya keeper Zach Banzon
  • 7: Another Burgess cross, another Buhagier shot, but this time the ball smashed into the crossbar and away
  • 30 GOAL: A Connor O’Toole cross was hit by Kosta Barbarouses. The shot was spilled and fell to Buhagier, who slotted it home for a welcome goal
  • 47 GOAL: A Sydney surge and Burgess shot saw the ball chaotically fall to Bobo, who coolly slotted home the goal
  • 49 GOAL: Rhyan Grant ran onto a Barbarouses through ball and was knocked over in the box. Bobo guided the penalty home despite the keeper guessing the right (left) way
  • 71 GOAL: From a corner, Adam Le Fondre was given the clearest of corridors to attack the ball, and he guided his header in from close range
  • 81 GOAL: Pinball in midfield fell to Pat Wood, who guided a lovely pass onto the run of Adam Le Fondre. He stood the keeper up and slotted home
  • 90+: Kaya FC cleverly worked a break but couldn’t score with their best chance of the match

Player of the match:

Cast your votes here.

What they said:

Sourced from the club’s match report.

Steve Corica: “I was quite happy with the win especially with our strikers getting a few goals amongst themselves.”

“We want to be involved in this tournament. We want to be there with the best teams in Asia and I’m glad we have qualified.”

“It is a tough group that we have been drawn into. We’ve become used to playing these teams. We faced Jeonbuk and Yokohama not too long ago so we know how good they are and we’re looking forward to the challenge.”

Key stats:

Sydney FC: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE, 3. Ben WARLAND, 4. Alex WILKINSON ©, 5. Connor O’TOOLE, 6. Mustafa AMINI, 8. Paulo RETRE (32. Patrick YAZBEK 61’), 9. BOBÔ (14. Adam LE FONDRE 69’), 11. Kosta BARBAROUSES (31. Adrian SEGECIC 61’), 12. Trent BUHAGIAR (33. Pat WOOD 69’), 22. Max BURGESS (21. Harry VAN DER SAAG 61’), 23. Rhyan GRANT

Unused Subs: 20. Tom HEWARD-BELLE (GK), 2. James DONACHIE, 24. Corey HOLLMAN, 25. Callum TALBOT, 36. Jaiden KURCHARSKI.

Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None.

Kaya FC: 1.  Zach BANZON, 6. Oskari JOHANNES KEKKONEN, 7. Hervas BEDIC ©, 8. Jesse CURRAN, 9. Eric GIGANTO, 12. Vincent DIANO, 17. Robert LOPEZ MENDY, 19. Carlyle MITCHELL, 20. DAIZO, 22. Fitch ARBOLEDA, 44. Audie MENZI.

Subs: 5. Camelo TACUSALME, 10. Abuloc AMITA, 13. Jesus MELLIZA, 18. Javier GAYOSO, 21. Sandro MIGUEL REYES, 27. Shirmar FELONGCO, 31. Nathan BATA.

Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None.

Next match:

Scheduling changes grant Sydney an extra day’s recovery but an unexpected long flight: the Sky Blues travel to Perth for a Saturday night clash against the Glory. Kick-off is 7:05pm AEDT.