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match report

Saints and Knights play out stalemate

Melbourne Knights and St Albans Saints played out a goalless 0-0 draw on Sunday afternoon at Churchill reserve, with a point doing little to either sides hopes of fighting relegation this season.

The draw stretches Knights’ winless streak to 7 games leaving the club glued to 12th position on the table and in the relegation play-off zone.

Andrew Marth’s squad continues to be decimated with injures and suspensions with Robert Zadworny (injury) and Nikola Jurkovic (suspended) adding to a growing list of unavailable players. This left just 4 available players on the bench, all of whom are under 21 squad players.

Chances were few are far between in the opening stanza, with the best opportunity coming in the 16th minute when Luke Jurcic headed over from close range following some brilliant lead up play from Danny Dixon on the left flank.

Former Knight Caleb Mikulic almost gave the Saints a dream start in the second half, only to be denied by the upright with Fraser Chalmers recovering superbly to deny Solorzano’s follow up from close range.

Another former Knight Joseph Monek had the next chance to open the scoring for the hosts, slicing his effort just over the bar.

Melbourne Knights upped the pressure midway through the second half with Kym Harris and Danny Dixon drawing saves from Saints keeper Aaron Romein.

A familiar pattern to the match was developing that would see the Knights attack down the flanks with Elvis Kamsoba the most prominent, cutting into the box with the final ball being blocked before a striker could finish. The centre back pairing of Ryan McGuffie and Anthony Katiforis proving pivotal in shutting out the Knights attacks.

Knights could have stolen all the points in the final minutes of the game, with Jason Hicks’ corner evading Batur before Miskulin put his effort just over the cross bar.

A point leaves the Knights stuck to 12th position on the table, and now face a tough fixture against Hume City back at Knights Stadium on Friday night.

Melbourne Knights Squad: 1.Fraser CHALMERS, 2.Luke JURCIC (45.Adrian TARDIO 77′), 4.Ben SUREY, 5.Damien MISKULIN, 6.Milan BATUR, 9.Kym HARRIS, 12.Anthony DEZOC, 15.Danny DIXON, 16.Jason HICKS, 23.Timmy PURCELL, 27.Elvis KAMSOBA.

Not Used. 20.Gabriel MATTI, 32.Marcelo SANCHEZ, 33.Marc DEZIC.

St Albans Saints Squad: 33.Aaron ROMEIN, 2.Ryan MCGUFFIE, 4.John LAZARIDIS (10.Hernan ESPINDOLA 61′), 5.Anthony KATIFORIS, 6.Nicholas SARBIN, 7.Matthew CUNDARI, 11.Joseph MONEK, 13.Caleb MIKULIC (9.Luis COVARRUBIAS 69′), 16.Michael GRGIC (14.Daniel SLOVACEK 80′), 18.Ben SHAPER, 40.Jean SOLORZANO.

Not Used: 15.Antonio BARBARO, 39.Matthew SESTO.

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