The Newcastle Jets recorded their first clean sheet of the season, as they clinically shutout A-League strugglers Wellington Phoenix on Saturday night.
In front of a weather-affected crowd of 6,258, Roy O’Donovan starred scoring twice and setting the wheels in motion for the Jets third – finished off in the end by Andrew Nabbout.
From the outset the Jets were the dominant side, as Joe Champness – in his starting debut – and Dimi Petratos went close with chances inside the opening five minutes.
O’Donovan then got in on the act, just putting his header wide minutes later.
It took a while, but the Jets finally got the goal they deserved eight minutes before the break, via a gift from the Phoenix’s Croatian defender Goran Paracki.
After receiving the ball at the back, Paracki inexplicably played a pass to O’Donovan who was standing on the six-yard box. The Irishman’s first shot was parried away by Phoenix keeper Keegan Smith, but he thumped home the follow up to give the Jets the lead.
O’Donovan was on the double in stoppage time, as Dimi Petratos cut the visitors apart down the left edge and cut back a pinpoint cross to the Jets striker who prodded in his seventh of the season.
After the break, the Jets continued where they left off in the first half, wreaking havoc in the front third.
After a series of threatening runs, Andrew Nabbout then got in on the act, scoring his first of the season following a sublime backheel from Roy O’Donovan.
The Irishman’s backheel found Champness who played in Nabbout centrally. The speedy winger then stepped past a couple of defenders and curled his strike into the right corner.
After netting their third, the Jets controlled the tempo for the remaining half an hour and closed out their first victory at McDonald Jones Stadium in almost a year.
What the coach said:
“We started off putting them under pressure and we kept that up right till the end of the game.
“I thought it was really our best performance. I know we scored five goals against the Mariners away from home, but I thought our all round play defensively, moving forward and getting into the box was first class.”
12’ | 0 – 0 | CHANCE! Vujica whips in a low cross that pinballs around the 18 yard. Great signs for the home side early! #NEWvWEL
13’ | 0 – 0 | CHANCE! It’s all happening here! Petratos whips in a vicious cross as O’Donovan goes just wide with the header #NEWvWEL
20’ | 0 – 0 | CLOSE! Petratos almost got away from Mullen on the break, great defending by the former Jet #NEWvWEL
31’ | 0 – 0 | A brilliant intercept from Nikolai Topor-Stanley as the last pass just falls short. Jets pressing here #NEWvWEL
36’ | 1 – 0 | GOOALL! Roy O’Donovan! #NEWvWEL
37’ | 1 – 0 | The Irishman makes light work of a mix up at the back, with his initial shot saved, he made no mistake with the follow up #NEWvWEL
45+1’ | 2 – 0 | GOOALL! Roy O’Donovan! A brace for the Irishman #NEWvWEL
45+1’ | 2 – 0 | Petratos fires a cross into the middle as Roy finds the net with the simplest of finishes. That’s 7 in 5 for our boy, Roy #NEWvWEL
46’ | 2 – 0 | Jets looking to press home their advantage as they attack through Champness early, his shot well saved by Smith #NEWvWEL
54’ | 3 – 0 | GOAL! Andrew Nabbout! #NEWvWEL
54’ | 3 – 0 | That’s his first for the season, after Champness holds up the ball while tracking cross field and pulls the trigger right on time. Great finish! #NEWvWEL
57’ | 3 – 0 | CHANCE! Close again as O’Donovan almost had a third, as his header sails wide #NEWvWEL
60’ | 3 – 0 | O’Donovan with a silky backheel to put Petratos into space, his strike well save by Smith #NEWvWEL
65’ | 3 – 0 | Nabbout showcases his speed with another bustling run, but once again the final pass just misses the mark #NEWvWEL
79’ | 3 – 0 | Jason Hoffman with a one-two down the right flank with a great cross into Nabbout who has his shot blocked #NEWvWEL
Ground: McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle
Referee: Kris Griffiths-Jones
Newcastle Jets: 1. Jack DUNCAN (gk), 3. Jason HOFFMAN, 4. Nigel BOOGAARD, 5. Ben KANTAROVSKI, 6. Steven UGARKOVIC, 7. Dimi PETRATOS 9. Roy O’DONOVAN, 13. Ivan VUJICA, 15. Andrew NABBOUT, 24.Joe CHAMPNESS, 44. Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY
Subs Not Used: 16.Nick COWBURN, 20.Glen MOSS (gk)
Yellow Cards: Nabbout (46’), Vujica (74’)
Red Cards: N/A
Goals: O’Donovan (37’& 46’), Nabbout (54’)
Wellington Phoenix: 2.Daniel MULLEN, 4.Goran PARACKI, 7.Gui FINKLER, 8.Dario VIDOSIC, 9.Andrija KALUDJEROVIC, 10.Michael McGLINCHEY, 17.Ali ABBAS, 19.Thomas DOYLE, 21.Roy KRISHNA, 22.Andrew DURANTE, 30.Keegan SMITH (gk)
Subs Not Used: 1.Lewis ITALIANO (gk), 14.Alex RUFER
Yellow Cards: N/A
Red Cards: N/A