Jets continue pre-season preparations against Young Socceroos

Newcastle Jets defeated Australia under 19s 4-1 in a pre-season friendly on the Central Coast on Thursday afternoon.

Goals from Roy O’Donovan, Daniel Georgevski, trialist Kaine Sheppard and youngster Maki Petratos sealed the victory for Newcastle in the behind-closed-doors fixture.

Maki Petratos was one of three youth players who was given a run with the first team, along with Patrick Langlois and Jackson Frendo.

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Both goalkeepers on trial at the club, Ryan Scott and Lewis Italiano, played a half each in goal as they continue to fight for a spot in the Newcastle squad.

Fellow trialists Mitch Austin and Kaine Sheppard started the match in the front three alongside Roy O’Donovan, and coach Ernie Merrick was pleased with how they did.

“It was a good run, it wasn’t an easy game for us,” Merrick said.

“Ryan [Scott] played the first half and was beaten by a goal which wasn’t really his fault, but he did well. Lewis Italiano played the second half and he did well also.

Kaine Sheppard
Kaine Sheppard (right) was one trialist who impressed boss Ernie Merrick.

“All four trialists, the two outfielders Mitch Austin and Kaine, did well, and the goalkeepers did well. We’ll keep them trialling for a little bit longer and if they have to go back for the weekend then we’ll get them back.

“We can’t sign all of them but they’ve all fitted in very well.”

Newcastle opened the scoring after Ronny Vargas was pulled down inside the box, and Roy O’Donovan capitalised from the spot early in the first half.

Australia got one back late in the half, but as the second stanza wore on Newcastle began to take control of the match.

Daniel Georgevski got forward from left-back and scored a one-on-one to put the Jets back in the lead, and the Jets began to run away with it in the final 15 minutes.

Daniel Georgievski
Daniel Georgievski found the back of the net against the Young Socceroos

Kaine Sheppard scored with a header at the back post to make it 3-1, and in the dying minutes 18-year-old Maki Petratos managed to find a goal of his own to make the final scoreline 4-1.

Newcastle youngster Angus Thurgate is in camp with the Young Socceroos but wasn’t in the squad for yesterday’s hit-out.

Ben Kantarovski, Ivan Vujica, Matt Ridenton and Dimi Petratos all sat this one out as they work to overcome minor injuries.

The Jets will continue their pre-season preparations next Wednesday when they take on Sydney FC at Leichhardt Oval in another behind-closed-doors friendly.