Shaun Moran (@MoranShaun)
Hume City has come away from Knights Stadium with a valuable three points in their Round 10 Victorian Premier League clash against Melbourne Knights on Sunday afternoon following a 1-0 victory.
In glorious conditions for football, little but individual brilliance and an inability to capitalise on chances separated the two sides.
Fresh from netting the decisive goal for Hume last week, it was Nick Hegarty who stepped up and ensured that his side would leapfrog Bentleigh into second spot in the standings.
After receiving the ball with his back to goal he cleverly turned his marker inside out enabling him to size up the goal and caress the ball beyond Christopher May’s outstretched right hand.
Both sides purported to trade possession in the early exchanges with neither able to impose themselves and take a lion’s share of possession.
A terrific chance did fall to the Knights in the fourth minute when Jacob Colosimo latched onto a cross from his brother Anthony but the former could only direct his header wide from point-blank range.
The ever-dangerous Turhan Sumbul went close for City at the other end, forcing a great save from May in the Knights goal when the former turned his man and blasted his shot towards goal.
Hume came out a revamped and inspired side in the first few minutes after the interval, and nearly broke the deadlock in the first minute.
Hegarty, who was in a bullish mood launched a left foot rocket from outside the box which rattled off the cross bar to the relief of the home fans who’d barely returned to their seats.
The home side reacted well and almost responded immediately after lead-up work by Marijan Cvitkovic. Knights’ number ten pranced through the centre before he set Alinejad free whose shot was matched by a sharp Chris Oldfield save.
The goal shortly after failed to take the wind out of their sails but instead Marth’s men were left frustrated after being denied a penalty when shouts for handball were waved away.
A dangerous cross from substitute and former Knights’ player Shaun Romein almost culminated in the second goal with Jarryd Barnes’ guiding his header wide.
The Knights attempted to press in the final minutes but were unable to translate ball retention into any notable chances with Alinejad’s fluffed shot in the area in the final minute summing up what was an irksome day for the hosts.
Speaking after the match, Melbourne Knights coach Andrew Marth expressed his distaste with a number of decisions which didn’t go his side’s way.
“I thought we played exceptionally well and the first half and should have scored a number of goals,” he said.
“We should’ve had a couple of clear-cut penalties and when decisions are made like that and they go against you, it destroys the club.”
Hume City boss Lou Acevski was pleased with the result, citing his team’s ability to work as a unit as being behind their recent run of success.
“The boys have been fantastic, and they’re just proving to everybody else that their heart and their commitment is unbelievable”, he asserted.
The victory means Hume will be seeking their sixth win on the trot when they host league leaders Northcote in a top-of-the-table clash next Sunday afternoon while the Knights will be looking to rebound against a rapidly improving Oakleigh at Jack Edwards Reserve next Sunday evening.
Melbourne Knights: Christopher MAY, Ryan FILIPOVIC (Josh BERRIOS 84’), Adam ZILIC, Ljubo MILICEVIC, Jacob COLOSIMO, Hassan DARAMY (Joseph KONYIT 77’), Ben SUREY, Shayan ALINEJAD, Sam TORRENS. Unused subs: Michael SIMMS, Matthew HRASTOV.
Yellow cards: Zilic (50’).
Red cards: Nil
Hume City: Chris OLDFIELD, Jarryd BARNES, Ersin KAYA (Jack TURNER 60’), Kaan KORKMALZ (Shaun Romein 76’), Isyan ERDOGAN, Naum SEKULOVSKI, Nick HEGARTY, Turhan SUMBUL (Josh KNIGHT 79’), Craig SIVES, Baki EFE, Atilla OFLI. Unused subs: Martin JOHN, Onder Simsek.
Goals: Hegarty (57’).
Yellow cards: Sumbul (64’), Ofli (67’), Efe (78’).
Red cards: Nil
Reserves: Melbourne Knights 1-3 Hume City