Men’s Match Review: Wellington Phoenix vs. Newcastle Jets

A night to forget for the Wellington Phoenix in the Isuzu UTE A-League men’s competition.

The Phoenix have been beaten 4-0 by a firing Newcastle Jets side at McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle, after trailing 1-0 at halftime.

Georgian forward Beka Mikeltadze scored a brace for the Jets, while left back Dylan Murnane and Brazilian playmaker Daniel Penha also found the back of the net for Newcastle, who recorded their first win of the season in style.

Phoenix head coach Ufuk Talay didn’t mince his words after the game, labelling it the worst performance of his time at the club.

“We ended up getting the result that we deserved tonight because we were second best to everything and I don’t think we were good with and without the ball,” Talay told media post-match.

“I think we were okay for the first 20 minutes…but I think once we conceded the wheels fell off a little bit.

“I don’t think we matched them with the intensity and energy they had and they played through us.

“The time I’ve been at Wellington Phoenix we’ve lost games but we haven’t been outplayed, but I think tonight we got what we deserved.”

Talay hopes the performance serves as a line in the sand for his side.

“I said to the boys after the game ‘at my time here we haven’t played like this and this is the first and last game we play this way’.”

Newcastle dominated the early possession, as was expected, but they had to wait until the 32nd minute to find their breakthrough.

Mikeltadze scored the first of his two goals, guiding home a great cross from Oliver Boumal.

The Jets should have had a second before halftime but the ever-dangerous Kuach Yuel blazed over the goal from close-range.

Yuel linked up with Mikeltadze for his second seven minutes after halftime, with the Georgian doubling Newcastle’s lead.

Penha hit the woodwork in the 63rd minute but then teed up Murnane for Newcastle’s third six minutes later.

The Brazilian then completed the scoring in the 80th minute after a great lay-off from Mikeltadze.

Fit again forward Jaushua Sotirio started the second-half in place of Ben Old and striker Ben Waine came on for the final 25 minutes but neither was able to spark the Phoenix attack.

Jack Duncan was largely untroubled in the Jets’ goal and secured his first clean sheet of the new campaign.

The Wellington Phoenix will be back in action against Avondale FC in the FFA Cup’s round of 16 in Melbourne on Tuesday night before playing Sydney FC in round five of the Isuzu UTE A-League on Sunday week.

Wellington Phoenix: 
20. Oli SAIL (gk), 5. James MCGARRY (19. Sam SUTTON 75th min), 6. Tim PAYNE, 8. Ben OLD (11. Jaushua SOTIRIO 45th min), 9. David BALL, 10. Reno PISCOPO (18. Ben WAINE 68th min), 14. Alex RUFER (c), 17. Callan ELLIOT, 21. Joshua LAWS, 23. Clayton LEWIS (13. Nicholas PENNINGTON 75th min), 88. Gary HOOPER.
Unused substitutes: 40. Alex PAULSEN (gk), 3. Matthew BOZINOVSKI, 16. Louis FENTON

Newcastle Jets: 1. Jack DUNCAN, 3. Jason HOFFMAN (2. Dane INGHAM 68th min), 4. Jordan ELSEY, 6. Matthew JURMAN (c), 7. Jordan O’DOHERTY (14. Mohamed AL-TAAY 86th min), 9. Beka MIKELTADZE, 10. Oliver BOUMAL, 11. Daniel PENHA, 15. Dylan MURNANE (44. Riley WARLAND 75th min), 17. Kuach YUEL (25. Samuel SILVERA 75th min), 32. Angus THURGATE (16. Kostandinos GROZOS 86th min)
Unused substitutes: 20. Michael WEIER (gk), 28. Blake ARCHBOLD

Beka MIKELTADZE (Newcastle Jets) – 32nd & 52nd mins
Dylan MURNANE (Newcastle Jets) – 69th min
Daniel PENHA (Newcastle Jets) – 80th min

Angus THURGATE (Newcastle Jets) – yellow – 45th min
Clayton LEWIS (Wellington Phoenix) – yellow – 45+1 min
Callan ELLIOT (Wellington Phoenix) – yellow – 49th min
David BALL (Wellington Phoenix) – yellow – 79th min
Gary HOOPER (Wellington Phoenix) – yellow – 90+3 min