Former Nix stars return to haunt as Team Wellington edge capital derby


A second-half strike from James McGarry wasn’t enough to prevent Wellington Phoenix U-20 falling to Team Wellington 3-1 in the derby at Westpac Stadium on Saturday.

Former Phoenix players Justin Gulley and All Whites international Joel Stevens have had the last laugh as Team Wellington maintained their winning run in an end-to-end clash.

Team Wellington took the lead in the 14th minute with a curling freekick from former Nix striker Stevens, whose dipping effort evaded Phoenix U-20 goalkeeper Lewis Italiano.

After a tense first half the game came to life in the second stanza as McGarry’s fiercely driven cross was turned into his own net by defender Guillermo Moretti to even the score in the 70th minute.

But it was former Nix fullback Gulley who struck straight back, as the wind offered an assist with his swirling 74th minute cross nestling into the net.

Tom Jackson then added a late nerve-settler for the visitors after Italiano’s initial save rebounded kindly off the crossbar to see Team Wellington win back bragging rights in the capital derby.