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From the stands: Phoenix send Sydney packing

Ruben, our latest addition to the WPW crew, isn’t shy of an opinion. He sat down and gave us his thoughts on the Phoenix’s first up win over Sydney FC. Yes, we realise he wasn’t actually in the stands for this one… but you get the idea.

So I didn’t make it to the Phoenix game last night, but I did watch it on the telly screen.

I was really impressed at what I saw from the Phoenix boys, but I can’t same the same for Sydney. It seemed Sydney were relying on Del Piero to create everything. Now he DID play very well, but having not been there for long the other players needed to step up and be there with him. It seemed they lacked a lot of energy on the field and wasted good possession.

However the Phoenix were quite the opposite. New formation changes with Muscat in the midfield and Bertos at right back proved to be good choices from Ricki.

Muscat of course set up both goals with two stunning balls, the first overhead to Huysegems (who I thought slotted in nicely to the Phoenix team) just snuck in past the keeper in a calm, accurate finish. And the second, what could only be described as a perfect cross to Fenton who charged towards the goal to head the ball inside the post – an unstoppable goal!

Necevski had a shocker. Absolute shocker. Not with the goals, but he defiantly helped with Wellington’s possession, corners and so on. No confidence, coming out at the wrong times, not attacking the ball when he should. I would be a little bit worried if I was an FC supporter.

The Sydney side need to make sure they don’t just pass the ball to Del Piero at every opportunity and expect him to make something out of thin air. They first need to put some more energy into helping him create the opportunities, and that starts with making some reasonable runs.

The Phoenix have had a good start. It’s a promising side. Everyone wore the shirt with pride, and delivered the result. Brockie needs some attention on finishing and shot selection. Totori needs to keep his head up and look for the right play, not just head down and run. But overall it looks like a solid back four, other than I can see Bertos getting exploited by good wingers. The younger guys looked comfortable on the field, which is always a positive sign.

Exciting times in the A-League ahead.

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