Sydney edge Victory in thriller

Sydney FC finally got their first National Youth League win for the campaign with an entertaining 3-2 away win against Melbourne Victory at SS Anderson Reserve.

Sydney FC finally got their first National Youth League win for the campaign with an entertaining 3-2 away win against Melbourne Victory at SS Anderson Reserve.

Victory got off to the best possible start through Christopher Cristaldo on nine minutes but the opener was quickly cancelled out by Sky Blue striker Alec Urosevski. Two goals on either side of half-time by Dimitri Petratos and Keifer Dotti gave Sydney a two-goal advantage before substitute Connor Pain got a late consolation goal for Victory.

Victory dominated the early stages and got on the scoresheet early when Theodore Markelis found space on the left flank in a promising position. The former Valencia youth player squared the ball across the box and Cristaldo arrived to slot it in the corner of the net.

It didn't take long for Sydney to equalise. After a defensive mix-up at the edge of the area, Urosevski stole the ball and poked it home with just Victory goalkeeper Tando Velaphi to beat.

The Sky Blues had a golden opportunity to take the lead mid-way through the half after a heavy touch from Victory defender Nicholas Ansell allowed Christopher Naumoff to nick the ball and be one-on-one with Velaphi. The Victory goalkeeper stood up tall and the Sydney youngster squandered the opportunity wide of the right upright.

On the stroke of half-time, Sydney took the lead in the most unusual circumstance. A Sydney cross was touched back to Velaphi by Ansell and referee Greg Gontscharow ruled that the Victory keeper had picked up a back pass. From the resulting indirect free kick, Petratos thumped into the net from six yards despite the Victory players forming a wall on the goal line.

The Victory fell further behind on 52 minutes when a corner found its way to the back post and Sydney left-back Dotti was on hand to smash the ball in from a tight angle to make it 3-1.

Despite being behind, Melbourne still maintained their possession advantage and missed two good chances to get back in the game. Substitute Jake Nakic struck the crossbar on 64 minutes and Markelis was denied brilliantly by Sydney custodian Vedran Janjetovic seconds later.

Markelis continued to work his way into the game and his cross brought about Victory's second goal. The delivery was rolled across the face of goal and substitute Connor Pain arrived at the back post to tap into an empty net on 81 minutes.

Even though they dominated the latter stages, Melbourne couldn't find an equaliser as the Sky Blues finally lifted themselves off the bottom of the standings.

Melbourne Victory 2 (Cristaldo 9, Pain 81)) Sydney FC 3 (Urosevski 11, Petratos 45, Dotti 52)

Melbourne Victory: 1. Tando Velaphi (20. Lawrence Thomas 46), 2. Matthew Foschini, 3. Nicholas Ansell, 4. Sam Gallagher, 5. Dylan Murnane, 6. Luc Jeggo, 7. Theodore Markelis, 8. James Jeggo, 9. Luke O'Dea (c) (12. John Buceto 58), 10. Julius Davies (14. Jake Nakic 58), 11. Christopher Cristaldo (13. Connor Pain 46) Yellow Cards: (Markelis 39, Gallagher (45+2)

Sydney FC: 2. Keifer Dotti, 3. Aaron Calver, 4. Roberto Speranza, 5. Daniel Petrovski (12. Lukas Stergiou 28), 6. Hagi Gligor (7. Joshua Macdonald 58), 8. Peter Triantis (c), 10. Christopher Naumoff, 14. Dimitri Petratos (9. Nikola Taneski 58), 16, Alec Urosevski, 17. Adam Griffiths (14. Dimitri Petratos 80), 20. Vedran Janjetovic