The gap at the top of the table has been reduced to five, while the Roar has continued to mount a charge to make the final six. With only four rounds left until the finals, here is a wrap of all the action in Round 23:
Adelaide United 1-1 Melbourne City
In what was touted as the match of the round as Adelaide United welcomed Melbourne City to Coopers Stadium, in a must win match for both squads. With City having lost their past 3 matches, they were the side that needed the 3 points.
Bruno Fornaroli’s missed penalty didn’t help City, as Johan Absalonsen broke the deadlock, in his first start for the Reds since October. However, former Reds attacker Stefan Mauk saved City, scoring in the second half, to ensure the points were shared.
Wellington Phoenix 0-1 Newcastle Jets
Wellington Phoenix have been left to rue a host of missed chances in front of their home crowd, going down to Newcastle 0-1.
Jason Hoffman’s effort just before half time ensured that the gap between the Jets and Sydney FC was reduced to five points. After a host of missed chances from the experienced Roy Krishna and Nathan Burns and rising star Sarpreet Singh, Ernie Merrick’s side will be pleased as they escaped Auckland with the three points.
Sydney FC 1-2 Brisbane Roar
Sydney FC are now winless in their past four matches, as Brisbane caused the biggest upset of the round, winning 1-2 away at Allianz Stadium.
The Roar have now won three successive games away from home, after Matt Mckay and Jacob Pepper troubled the scorers inside 20 minutes.
Milos Ninkovic reduced the deficit, just shy of the hour mark, however, Sydney’s late rally only materialised to a shot against the post from Matt Simon.
Sydney still sit 5 points clear at the top, however the champions suffered their first back-to-back defeat since April 2016.
Melbourne Victory 5-2 Central Coast Mariners
Bersat Berisha looked the player he once was, scoring a hatrick on Sunday to move up to third of the table, climbing one spot above cross-town rivals Melbourne City. Berisha now has 11 goals in his last eight outings against the Mariners.
The Victory ran riot on Sunday afternoon, with Leroy George blasting the Victory into the lead with Christian Theoharous getting in on the act to score his first ever Hyundai A-League goal to round out the scoring for the hosts.
Former Victory man, Connor Pain scored a quick-fire double at the end of the match, which was nothing but consolation for the disappointing Mariners.