Knights heartbroken after draw

The Melbourne Knights have learnt two very important lessons in their last two games. The season opener against Dandenong showed why 100% intensity is required right at the start of the match to overcome an opponent mentally. This week’s game against Heidelberg United showed that although playing excellent football at a great pace, a two goal buffer can count for nothing in the dying minutes and lose you two points.
The Knights opened the game up against Heidelberg in front of 2,000 fans on Monday night and were immediately on top of play with piercing runs on the right wing coming from Adrian Zahra and Josip Magdi?, causing havoc for the slow Heidelberg defence which featured ex-Knights captain Craig Elvin. Fan favourite and returning star Danny Tiatto slotted nicely in the central midfielder role with Ben Surey, controlling the tempo of the game superbly and not giving the ageing Heidelberg side a chance.
It was half an hour in when the Knights created their first clear cut opportunity when young striker Jacob Colosimo received a superb Tiatto through ball, pushing it in front of him, skipping past his man and delivering a deft ball to the waiting Magdi? who made no mistake flicking the ball over a hapless Tilovski. Heidelberg replied nearly immediately with John Lazaridis floating a hopeful ball into the Knights box which big striker Mark Tsiorlas headed down to a teammate to slot through a sea of legs. The Knights knew immediately that the goal was undeserved especially since it looked as though Tsiorlas had fouled Zahra with hands in the back. Only moment’s later big Knights defender Ryan Filipovi? rose over his marker and headed truly from a corner to restore the lead at 2-1.
The second half began with the Knights once again controlling the tempo of the game and not giving Heidelberg a sniff. The difference between the Knights this year and the past few years is the fact that coach Ivan Ðuzel has his side playing very flowing and attacking football which is an absolute pleasure to watch. Knights young gun Jacob Colosimo got a deserved goal when he slotted past Tilovski in a high pressure situation showing maturity beyond his years. 3-1 up and the Knights are in cruise control – all over a tiring Heidelberg outfit who were barely staying in the contest thanks to some Tilovski brilliance and the woodwork.
Football is known as a cruel game. Heidelberg threw up 3 strikers in the final 10 minutes as a gamble to see if they could salvage a point even though it didn’t look as though they were going to score for the rest of the game. A goal to Steve Martin thanks to a communication error in the defence from a corner in the 88th minute looked like a similar consolation goal to the one Heidelberg scored last week against the Georgies to make it 3-2 as well. It wasn’t to be though as Osagie Ederaro, last season’s VPL leading goal scorer slotted home a goal from a floated cross which deflected off a defender in the 92nd minute to strike a knife through the heart of every Knights fan and send the Heidelberg faithful in raptures. Knights coach Ivan Ðuzel was so dejected that he sat on the bench for a full twenty minutes after the game without saying a word. The players, staff and fans knew it wasn’t a fair result – coming from both the Knights and Heidelberg sides. Sometimes football isn’t fair, just like life. The signs of a great season are there though with a very attractive and attacking passing game being employed by the Knights – with many striking options up front which will surely keep the Knights faithful happy.
The Knights second home game is against the Sunshine Georgies next Sunday at Knights Stadium at 6pm.

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