NYL | Improving United fall to clinical Newcastle

The Canberra United NYL squad suffered defeat away to the Newcastle Jets on Saturday, going down by two goals in a tight contest at Adamstown Oval.

Both sides started the game well with chances coming at either end but it was the Jets who took the lead just after the 20 minute mark.

After receiving the ball inside the box, Maki Petratos was fouled, and the referee pointed straight to the spot.

Kosta Petratos stepped up and slotted the ball past Jurak in goals to give the Jets the lead midway through the first half.

The game was even following the goal, with both sides creating chances but neither able to convert. The Jets did have the majority share of possession but some excellent keeping from Jurak kept the home side out and United in the game.

The second half was much the same as the first, with openings for both sides but it was the visitors who controlled possession of the game.

Five minutes into the half the Jets had a free-kick through Jack Simmons who hit it well only to be denied by a stunning save from Jurak in goals.

The best chance from United came in the 69th minute when Bul Juach broke through the Jets’ defence only to have his effort denied by a desperate goalmouth scramble.

Chances were fewer in the later stages of the game as the hosts looked to close out the contest and extended their lead with just over 10 minutes to go through Kent Harrison.

Maki Petratos lifted the ball over the United backline and Harrison took full advantage to slide the ball past Jurak.

The visitors continued to press in a bid to get back into the game but were unable to break down the resolute home defence.

Head Coach Dean Ugrinic said that the performance was significantly improved from the game against Sydney FC, but Newcastle had a bit more quality in their team.

“The result essentially came down to a little bit more experience and quality in the Jets’ forward line,” Ugrinic said.

“Mitch Austin, who just recently signed from Melbourne Victory, lead the forward line together with the Petratos boys and they were able to take advantage of the chances they created whereas we squandered ours”.

Ugrinic also said that he was pleased that the players were improving.

“They’re learning and they’re getting better each week which is really pleasing for me”. 

United have a weekend off and return to action on the 16th against Sydney FC at Deakin Stadium. Ugrinic said that they would be using this extra time to prepare as well as possible for the Sydney FC game.