Derby despair for Jets

The Newcastle Jets suffered a 2-1 defeat to local rivals the Central Coast Mariners tonight in their Round 17 Hyundai A-League clash at EnergyAustralia Stadium.

The Newcastle Jets suffered a 2-1 defeat to local rivals the Central Coast Mariners tonight in their Round 17 Hyundai A-League clash at EnergyAustralia Stadium.

Despite going ahead via a Joel Griffiths penalty inside ten minutes and creating numerous chances to add to their lead, the Jets conceded two second half goals to the Mariners, meaning the three points travelled south to Gosford.

Buoyed by a vociferous Boxing Day crowd of 11,413, hoping to send off club captain Jade North with a win, the Jets started the match in attacking fashion with Griffiths sending a curling effort centimetres wide of Danny Vukovic-s left post following a Matt Thompson square ball in just the opening minute of play.

In the ninth minute the Jets were awarded a spot kick as Marko Jesic was pulled down by Andre Gumprecht following an Adam D-Apuzzo throw in.

Regular penalty taker Griffiths smashed the resultant penalty into Vukovic-s top left hand corner, leaving the Mariners keeper with no chance.

Newcastle was dealt a blow on 20 minutes as Gary van Egmond was forced to replace the injured Jesic with Jobe Wheelhouse, however the Jets maintained their formation and continued to look likely in attack for the remainder of the opening stanza.

On 60 minutes, the Jets looked to double their advantage when Song and Griffiths exchanged passes on the right hand side in an enterprising piece of one-touch football. The passage resulted in a shot on goal to Song but his effort was held well by Vukovic.

Six minutes later though and the visitors would level matters through a Sasho Petrovski header. The big striker stooped well at the near post, latching on to a Dean Heffernan cross. Ante Covic laid a glove to the ball but was unable to prevent it from crashing into the back of the net.

A lapse of concentration then cost Newcastle in the 79th minute when Matt Simon reacted first to a quickly taken free-kick by Petrovski. The lanky Simon held off two defenders before sliding his shot under the body of Covic to break the hearts of the Jets faithful.

The home side pushed for a late equaliser, and came close through strikes by Song and Tarek Elrich, but were ultimately left to rue their chances in an enthralling local derby.

After the game, Head coach Gary van Egmond believed the game followed an all-too-familiar pattern from this season.

“We-ve spoken about it many times, we-ve been in a familiar situation, we-ve dominated the game for large portions of it and haven-t taken our chances, unfortunately tonight-s no different.”

“We talked about killing off the game after half time and come out and really play with an intensity, similar to what we did against Melbourne, to try to kill of the tie, but we didn-t do so.”

“We gave the Central Coast a bit of a sniff, and if you do that it only takes a sniff for the Central Coast and they-ll penalise you,” van Egmond said.

The Jets will now take to the road in the New Year to take on Wellington and Adelaide in consecutive weeks before returning home to take on Perth Glory in Round 20.

Event Details: Newcastle Jets Squad: 1. Ante COVIC (gk), 2. Adam GRIFFITHS, 3. Jade NORTH (c), 8. Matt THOMPSON, 9. Joel GRIFFITHS, 10. Jin-Hyung SONG, 11. Tarek ELRICH, 13. Adam D-APUZZO (29. Sean ROONEY 75-), 16. Ben KANTAROVSKI, 24. Marko JESIC (12. Jobe WHEELHOUSE 20-), 26. Mark MILLIGAN (5. James HOLLAND 75-)

Unused substitutes: 30. Justin PASFIELD (gk)

Yellow cards: Adam Griffiths 7-

Red cards: Nil

Central Coast Mariners Squad: 2. Andre GUMPRECHT (19. Matt SIMON 52-), 4. Pedj BOJIC, 5. Bradley PORTER, 7. John HUTCHINSON, 8. Dean HEFFERNAN (15. Andrew CLARK 80-), 11. Dylan MACALLISTER, 17. Matthew OSMAN, 18. Alex WILKINSON, 20. Danny VUKOVIC (gk), 22. Sasho PETROVSKI, 23. Mile JEDINAK (10. Adrian CACERES 67-)

Unused substitutes: 30. Andrew REDMAYNE (gk)

Yellow cards: Sasho Petrovski 43-, Matt Simon 90+4-

Red cards: Dylan Macallister 90+4-

Newcastle Jets: 1 (Griffiths 9-) Central Coast Mariners: 2 (Petrovski 66-, Simon 79-) Crowd: 11,413 Referee: Peter O-Leary