Another mild evening rolled across the garden state as the Melbourne Knights travelled along the M1 to Clayton South for their round nine clash against Kingston City FC. With the competition well and truly in full-swing, the Knights went into the match hoping to take all three points but by the end of 90 minutes, the visitors unfortunately headed home empty handed.
The Knights, with a growing list of injuries, saw three reserve players promoted to the senior squad in a match that would test the depth of the current team. Along with these fresh faces, young keeper Jordan Gifkins made his first starting 11 appearance in goals.
— Melbourne Knights FC (@MelbKnights) April 28, 2018
The opening minutes went by fairly evenly, with possession being shared by both sides and with each team getting the ball into attacking positions but not quite able to deliver on goals. A chance for the Knights came in the 17th minute when Nate Foster broke away from Kingston’s back line and was able to cross a ball in towards goal. However, the ball was unmet and went wide after crossing the face of goal. Not long after, Kingston City’s Jack Atkinson went into the referee’s book for a loose foot that tripped up Brody Taylor as he was making a run towards goal from the halfway line.
In his debutante match as goal keeper, Jordan Gifkins was called into action right before halftime when Keanu Moore received a well-placed through ball which he was able to shoot onto goal. Gifkins had other ideas and was able to pull off a magnificent save against Moore’s attempt, eventually being cleared by a high-peforming Ayden Brice. Soon after, the halftime whistle blew and both teams walking into the dressing rooms goalless.
For the Knights, the second half was more of the same, with chances created but lacking that special something to convert chances into goals. Early on, Luke Jurcic received a yellow card for a late challenge on Kingston’s Sami Nour, giving the home side a free kick in a dangerous area. The set piece was arranged, and Knights’ wall did its job and blocked the oncoming shot, denying the home side a further chance on goal.
The one and only goal of the match came in the 68th minute when Moore was able to dance around Shaun Timmins and Brody Taylor to play a pass onto Damian Iaconis, who was unmarked within the 18-yard box. Iaconis was then able to line a shot up and put it past Gifkins to give the home side a one-nil lead in the 68th minute.
Despite the Knights’ last-ditch efforts to equalise and walk away with a consolation point, the ball unluckily did not find the back of the net for the visitors with the match ending in favour of the home side, who went on to record their third win of the season.
The Knight are back at home this week as they face off against league leaders Avondale FC in round 10 of the Victorian NPL. Make sure you’re there to cheers to boys onto victory by RSVP-ing to our FaceBook event below.