A classy second stanza double from former Denmark international Morten Nordstrand helped Newcastle Jets to secure a come from behind 3-2 victory over Wellington Phoenix at Hunter Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Former FC Copenhagen star Nordstrand struck in the 53rd and 73rd minutes respectively to help the Jets to extend their unbeaten run to three games against a Phoenix side who finished the fixture with ten men.
Indeed, Wellington’s Hamish Watson – who scored both of the Phoenix’s goals in the first 45 – was sent from the field mid-way through the second half after he received his second yellow card of the contest.
The score was evenly poised at 2-2 when Watson was dismissed, and Scott Miller’s men made their numerical advantage count soon after when Nordstrand struck what would prove to be the game’s winning goal after he linked with Serbian midfielder Enver Alivodic.
Watson gave Wellington the lead 23 minutes in when he scored from close range following a Phoenix corner.
But the Jets managed to restore parity to the contest just four minutes later when Leonardo found Alivodic who in turn sent a dangerous ball across the face of goal. Phoenix defender and former Jets Championship winner Andrew Durante failed to deal with the danger, and instead inadvertently bundled the ball into the back of his own net.
Wellington regained their lead in the 37th minute when Watson fired into the goal after a counter-attack that the Jets will feel that they ought to have defended better.
But Danish attacker Nordstrand, who was making his first start for the club against the ‘Nix, was to make all the headlines for his exploits in the second stanza.
Nordstrand sent a stunning strike from the edge of the area into the back of the net eight minutes after the break having been found by Brazilian ace Leonardo.
The winner came 20 minutes later as Nordstrand’s low drive following a combination play with Alivodic ensured that the Jets went 3-2 up.
Miller’s men had chances to extend their lead late on, however Trifunovic, Alivodic, and substitute Mitch Cooper could not breach Glen Moss’s goal again.
Mark Birighitti also produced a classy save late in the game to ensure that all three Hyundai A-League points would be staying in the Hunter.
Newcastle Jets will play their next match away to Central Coast Mariners in the second #F3Derby of the season on Sunday 28 February 2016.
Newcastle Jets 3 (Durante (OG) 27’, Nordstrand 53’, 73’)
Wellington Phoenix 2 (Watson 23’, 37’)
Hunter Stadium, Newcastle
Referee: Chris Beath
Newcastle Jets: 1. Mark Birighitti (Gk), 2. Daniel Mullen, 3. Jason Hoffman, 4. Nigel Boogaard (C), 6. Cameron Watson (24. Nicholas Cowburn 66’), 7. Enver Alivodic, 9. Milos Trifunovic, 10. Leonardo (28. Ryan Kitto 80’), 16. Steven Ugarkovic, 19. Morten Nordstrand (14. Mitch Cooper 80’), 22. Lachlan Jackson
Substitutes not used: 17. Radovan Pavicevic, 20. Ben Kennedy (Gk)
Yellow cards: Watson, Birighitti
Red cards: Nil
Wellington Phoenix: 1. Glen Moss (Gk), 2. Manny Muscat (18. Ben Sigmund 80’), 4. Roly Bonevacia, 6. Dylan Fox, 10. Michael McGlinchey, 12. Blake Powell (11. Kwabena Appiah-Kubi 82’), 13. Albert Riera, 19. Thomas Doyle, 22. Andrew Durante (C), 23. Matthew Ridenton (16. Louis Fenton 81’), 26. Hamish Watson
Substitutes not used: 15. James McGarry, 20. Lewis Italiano (Gk)
Yellow cards: Doyle, Watson (x2)
Red cards: Watson