The Melbourne Knights have recorded a famous one-nil victory over the Oakleigh Cannons on Friday night at Jack Edwards Reserve.
A penalty early into the second half was enough for the Knights to secure their second consecutive 1-0 win over much more fancied opponents. What makes the win all the more impressive for the visitors was that their squad was entirely made of players under the age of 25.
The opening twenty minutes of the match was a dull contest, with the only effort on goal a Franjic drive from outside the box that was easily saved by Zois in the home goal.
Oakleigh were forced to make an early substitution when Ricky Diaco came off due to injury and replaced by former Knights player Joshua Groenewald, the sub almost had an immediate impact when he won possession inside the area only to screw his low shot just wide of the mark.
The Knights gave a full debut to new signing Kayne Vincent a New Zealand striker who was previously plying his trade in India, and Josip Magdic did his best to assist his team mate with a debut goal, however Vincent could only direct his header directly at Zois.
After a dull opening half from the home side, the Cannons immediately got onto the front foot in the second half, Ante Cicak set up Hayden Doyle who drew a good save from Aaron Romein in the Knights goal.
With the home side pushing forward, the Knights hit them on the break with Kayne Vincent adjudged to be fouled inside the area and a penalty awarded. Without the experience of Kozic, Jacob Colosimo stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way to give the Knights’ the lead.
Oakleigh pushed forward in numbers, however found the Knights defence equal to the task and young keeper Aaron Romein in exceptional form. Hayden Doyle witnessed this first hand when he found himself one on one with Romein only to draw an excellent save from the keeper.
It just didn’t look like the home side were destined to get anything form this contest, especially when Stephen Hatzikostas somehow managed to hit the crossbar from a metre out with the keeper already beaten.
After this scare, the Knights dropped numbers back and held off the Cannons in a frantic final ten minutes that saw plenty of tough challenges fly, to record a hard worked and well deserved three points.
The Knights will attempt to make it three in a row when the take on Heidelberg United on Friday night at Knights Stadium.
Oakleigh Cannons: 1. Peter ZOIS, 12. Luke WALKER, 2. James CUMMING, 8. James ROBINSON, 6. Ramazan TAVSANGIOGLU, 10. Ricky DIACO, 18. Stephen HATZIKOSTAS, 21. Hayden DOYLE, 20. Aristidis DRAKOS, 25. Craig GOODWIN, 4. Ante CICAK.
Subs: 35. Daniel NEESHAM, 13. Bill DAMIANOS, 15. Joshua GROENEWALD, 16. Frankie LAGANA.
Melbourne Knights: 21. Aaron ROMEIN, 3. Ryan FILIPOVIC, 5. Leo SHIN, 6. Tomislav USKOK, 8. Josip MAGDIC, 9. Kayne VINCENT, 11. Anthony COLOSIMO, 17. Joseph FRANJIC, 19. Adam ZILIC, 20. Jacob COLOSIMO, 22. Craig SWEENEY.
Subs: 1. Martin JOHN, 7. Ridvan SAGLAM, 12. Shayan ALINEJAD, 16. James STEFANOU, 18. Melvin BECKETT.
Goals: J. Colosimo 50’.
MoM. A. Romein (MK)
By Andrew Fisher (Goal Weekly)