Wellington Phoenix Extend Unbeaten Run Against The Champions


Melbourne Victory equalised late to snatch a point in their own backyard as Wellington Phoenix dominated the Hyundai A-League champions in the first half.

Wellington Phoenix had recorded an eight-game unbeaten run the previous week and were looking to further that record against the Melbourne side.

That prospect looked in doubt as in-form striker Ola Toivonen scored within five minutes to open the scoring for the home side.

Wellington Phoenix responded almost immediately as Louis Fenton capitalised on a defensive error down the right. The full-back drove down the wing and crossed into the six-yard box, where David Williams was located to tap in the equaliser.

Victory striker Toivonen came close again as former Phoenix star Kosta Barbarouses crossed In for the Swede, but this time his effort was off target.

Mid-way through the half and Roy Krishna was brought down inside the Victory box to provide the opportunity of the lead. The top scorer stepped up to smash his effort beyond Lawrence Thomas in the home goal and give Wellington Phoenix the lead.

It wasn’t long until the flying Fijian was causing problems yet again, this time latching on to a parried save from the Victory keeper and slotting home from an angle to increase the deficit. 

Moments before the break and Williams thought he had extended the lead, but Thomas was alive to his shot to deny the attacker another goal.

Heading into the second half and Victory looked to get a grip of the game that was slipping away from them. 

Victory broke on the counter and the ball was fed through for James Troisi to slot beyond the on-rushing Filip Kurto. 

Wellington Phoenix were tight at the back and weathered the constant attacks from the home side, even threatening on the break themselves. Alex Rufer found space just outside the Victory box and released a rocket that lifted inches over the bar.

Minutes remained of normal time as Mark Rudan decided to bring on fresh legs in Michal Kopczyński and Dylan Fox.

Unfortunately, the home side persevered and were awarded for their efforts as Barbarouses equalised in the dying minutes to snatch a point.

Full Highlights here.


Starting XI

1. Filip KURTO, 4. Mandi SOSA, 11. David WILLIAMS, 13. Liberato CACACE, 14. Alex RUFER, 16. Louis FENTON, 18. Sarpreet SINGH, 19. Tom DOYLE, 21. Roy KRISHNA, 22. Andrew DURANTE, 27. Steven TAYLOR

Wellington Phoenix Substitutes

62’ OFF 11. David WILLIAMS ON 7. Cillian SHERIDAN

85’ OFF 4. Mandi SOSA ON 6. Dylan FOX

85’ OFF 19. Tom DOYLE ON 15. Michal KOPCZYNSKI

Melbourne Victory Substitutions

46’ OFF 16. Joshua HOPE ON 15. Raul BAENA

69’ OFF 3. Corey BROWN ON. 24. Elvis KAMSOBA

80’ OFF 11. Ola TOIVONEN ON 7. Kenjok ATHIU

Next Match details

Wellington Phoenix vs. Sydney FC, Wednesday 23rd January 2019, Westpac Stadium, 7:35pm NZT