U16s Newcastle Jets were held to a 3-3 draw in Sydney by Hills United after leading 3-0 with 15 minutes to go! Billed as the “Battle between the Leaders” as Newcastle Jets were ranked 1st and Hills United 2nd, the Jets pulled away into a 3-0 lead and could have extended it even more if they had not conceded a red card mid-way through the 2nd half which turned the game completely around and the local team was able to avoid defeat!
The Newcastle Jets began the game in their customary high intensity – high press game, to which the local team had no answer. Hills United were tall, strong and technical but had no answer for Newcastle’s high press game.
The Newcastle team took control of the game from the outset and tested the Hills United goal continuously. They blocked all channels when Hills did get the ball and starved the local team of possession. The first goal game about when the Hills right full back passed back to his keeper, as all other players were marked by the Jets, the keeper then passed to his left full back, who intern was caught in possession! A simple cross across the face of the goal and a well-placed shot to the corner of the Hill’s goal resulted in the Jets opening their account, 1-0!
The second goal came about when the Hills defense were unable to play out due to the Jet’s high pressing, a loss of possession just outside the box, and a shot from a Newcastle player that deflected on the way and ended up at the back of the Sydney team’s goal!
The Jets went into half time with a 2-0 advantage and such was their domination that their goalkeeper was extended only once in the entire half!
In the 2nd half the Newcastle Jets continued to dominate possession and dictate play. A quick break from the left and cross found the right winger completely unmarked and he had no problem burying the ball in the Hills net with a nicely directed header.
Chasing a 3-0 deficit, spectators, players and coaching staff of Hills United showed their emotions by challenging and calling out at referee and linesman decisions constantly.
During a Jets corner kick, the Hills United goalkeeper was seen rolling around on the ground while the players surrounded the referee appealing for a card. The referee consulted his linesman and returned with a red card for the centre forward of the Newcastle team!
For the ensuing 5 minutes little had changed but after this, there was a strategic change to the play of the Jets. It appeared they reverted to a 4-4-1 formation which in turn resulted in the absence of any high pressing which proved so effective against their opponents.
Hills United then began to enjoy more possession from which they were starved throughout the game and with this, they began to gain momentum and began probing the Jets goal. Some fine saves by the Newcastle goal-keeper kept them out but in the final 15 minutes the continuous pressure resulted in three goals which brought the game to an incredible 3-3 finale!
While some credit must go to the Hills United players for their late fight back, the Newcastle Jets need to demonstrate greater discipline as well as tactical awareness when things don’t go according to plan!
Hills United FC vs Newcastle Jets on Saturday 28th May at Bella Vista Public School, Sydney.
U18s Jets won 4-2
U16s Jets drew 3-3
U15s Jets lost 3-1
U14s Jets drew 2-2
U13s Jets won 7-1
U16s Round 15 FNSW Boy’s Youth League2 Fixtures:
U16s FNSW Boy’s Youth League2 Table:
FNSW Boy’s Youth League2 Club Championship:
source: Tom Tsamouras