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YoungHeart Manawatu

Auckland City


ASB Premiership - Week 15
Memorial Park, Palmerston North
Wednesday 2 March, 2011


Joachim RANDE 18'

Manel EXPOSITO 38'
Andrew MILNE 48'



Halftime:              1-1         Referee:              Matt BULL                  Crowd: 200


Auckland City make it 10-in-a-row

by Gordon Glen Watson at Memorial Park

PALMERSTON NORTH - Auckland City extended their unbeaten run in the ASB Premiership to ten games as they came from behind to beat YoungHeart Manawatu at Memorial Park on Wednesday evening.

The win gave Auckland City it's eighth consecutive victory along with two draws and pulls them to within three points of Waitakere United with one match left to play in the regular season.

Their last defeat was a 1-3 reverse to Waitakere United on November 7, 2010.

Co-coach Aaron MacFarland was pleased with the result and picked two individual performances out for mention.

"We've kept our winning run intact and our momentum going into the finals," MacFarland said, "I think Albert Vidal showed his ability to keep possession and win balls. Andrew Milne scored his third goal of the season and continues to press. We're satisfied with most others."

Auckland City chose to leave a raft of first choice players behind including Jacob Spoonley, Ivan Vicelich, Adam Dickinson and David Mulligan. Ian Hogg was also suspended.

That decision looked to have backfired on the visitors when YoungHeart Manawatu took the lead after 18 minutes.

Pacy right midfielder Dale Higham beat Sam Campbell to the byline and whipped over a dangerous cross that former Solomon Islands U-20 international, Joachim Rande, had no problem sweeping past stand-in goalkeeper Liam Little.

Rande could have doubled their lead just two minutes later when Higham provided another tantalising cross that whizzed across the face of a gaping Auckland City goal.

Manawatu could ill afford to pass up such an opportunity and they were punished twenty minutes later when Manel Exposito levelled the match with a downward header from an Andrew Milne cross.

Within a minute of conceding, Manawatu nearly struck back when a powerful right foot shot by Michael White forced a brilliant save from Liam Little.

Then Andrew Milne edged Auckland City into the lead three minutes into the second half when Daniel Morgan ghosted beyond a static Manawatu defence and picked out Milne in a crowded penalty area with a perfect pass.

Milne's first touch took him clear of his marker and his second produced a left foot finish of the highest quality to make it 2-1.

Daniel Morgan's evening came to an end when he was stretchered off after falling awkwardly in an aerial challenge with Nathan Cooksley.

Manawatu threw players forward in search of an equaliser but came up short as Auckland City closed the game off with an efficient performance in the final minutes.

Auckland City co-coach Aaron MacFarland looked ahead to the semi-finals.

"We've been planning for Team Wellington in the semi-finals for some time and we will see if we can arrange some friendlies as we have a bit of a break between now and then," MacFarland said.

YoungHeart Manawatu coach Bob Sova cut a dejected figure at the end of the match.

"We set out a game plan to play on the break and it was quite effective. We may have even gone two up at one stage," Sova said.

Critical of the manner in which his side lost goals, Sova nevertheless paid tribute to his team's commitment.

"The first goal was a disappointment to concede. It was a free header. The second goal, we were naive. We lost the ball twice and were punished. But I can't fault the players efforts, they gave everything."

The defeat is the twelfth loss from thirteen ASB Premiership games for YoungHeart Manawatu and they must now win their final game to avoid accumulating the lowest ever points total in the competition's history when they play Team Wellington on Sunday.

"That's the eighth time this season we've lost by one goal. We had three good chances in the second half and I thought we were worth a draw today," Sova said.

Auckland City's match with Canterbury United has been postponed as a mark of respect for those affected by the Christchurch earthquake.



Team Sheet

YoungHeart Manawatu


Auckland City

1- Matt BORREN (GK)

1- Liam LITTLE (GK)

4- Colin FALVEY

2- Angel BERLANGA (van STEEDEN 46')


16- Albert VIDAL

8- Nathan COOKSLEY

17- Adam McGEORGE (BAWDEKAR 60')

9- Michael WHITE

23- Adam THOMAS

10- Adam COWAN (c)

19- Daniel MORGAN (KELLY 64')

12- Joachim RANDE  (FRASER 64')


15- Pablo MOYA


18- Dale HIGHAM


25- Jono STEELE

22- Andrew MILNE





19- Ben WILKES (GK)

18- Paul GOTHARD (GK)

5- Josh CHETTLEBURGH (53')

20- Riki van STEEDEN (46')

13- Joe HARRIS

30- Dean LAUSEV

17- Brook TOZER

6- Stu KELLY (64')

16- Michael FRASER (64')

26- Aaron BAWDEKAR (60')


=yellow card

=2 yellow cards

= red card

Play by Play



Welcome to Memorial Park, Palmerston North, for the final time this season. YoungHeart Manawatu take on Auckland City in blustery and overcast conditions in this Rescheduled Week 15 ASB Premiership fixture.

We've had some rain and the surface is firm but soft underneath, the ground is in more or less perfect conditions for a good game of football. Auckland City have a mathematical chance of pinching the ASB minor premiership, but only if they win both their remaining fixtures and hope Otago upset Waitakere on Sunday.

Auckland will also need a goal glut to catch up with their West Auckland rivals superior goal difference. YoungHeart Manawatu want to avoid finishing the season with less than five points. Hawke's Bay United hold the record for the lowest points tally and Manawatu need to win one of their final two matches to avoid that unwanted "honour".

The visitors have plumped for an experimental line-up with many established first team stars injured or rested. Co-coach Ramon TRIBULIETX says he has trust in every player in the squad and they'll be tested today. Manawatu coach Bob SOVA has selected more or less the same starting line-up as has been at his disposal all season and he'll be hoping for a change of fortune today.


Referee Matt BULL gets us underway here and all the early running suggests Auckland City will want to impose themselves. They're camped in YoungHeart's half and have earned a free-kick halfway into Manawatu territory. Three over the ball for Auckland, five targets in the penalty area.


Free-kick ended up as a goal kick. Alex FENERIDIS in possession for Auckland City as the visitors come forward again.


Nathan COOKSLEY plays in Colin FALVEY. FALVEY to Adam COWAN, COWAN's backpass is short and Matt BORREN has to clear.


Angel BERLANGA switches play but Dale HIGHAM intercepts and YoungHeart Manawatu counter attack but it comes to nothing. Liam LITTLE in possession.


Colin FALVEY cuts out a cross by Adam McGEORGE and Luis CORRALES dashes onto the loose ball but Pablo MOYA stabs the ball off CORRALES shinpad and its a goalkick.


Auckland City skipper Adam McGEORGE is bossing midfield at the moment. Auckland City content to spray passes across two banks of Manawatu defence. They've earned a corner and its to be taken by Angel BERLANGA. Adam COWAN heads clear.


Adam COWAN launches a long ball behind Adam THOMAS but Manawatu sit so deep there is nobody within cooee of it for Manawatu.


Auckland City reel off the first shot on goal by Manel EXPOSITO but Matt BORREN holds comfortably.


Adam THOMAS plays a tidy short pass for Luis CORRALEs who is dumped by Adam COWAN. Its a freekick to Acukland City wide on the right just in line with the edge of the 18 yard box.


Luis CORRALES appears to be injured and is receiving treatment.


Daniel MORGAN whips it in to the far post and MOYA swings a big foot through the ball to clear it.


Angel BERLANGA splits the Manawatu defence with an incisive pass for CORRALES but Jono STEELE gets a foot in just in time for the home team.


Joachim RANDE gets involved in a nice buildup with Willie HODGE and Michael WHITE but the final pass is too long even for RANDE's pace.


Adam COWAN slings a long ball over the top for Dale HIGHAM but Sam CAMPBELL neatly heads back to Liam LITTLE.


CORRALES beats MOYA to the byline and whips over a tantalising cross but there are no takers for Auckland. Now Manawatu break through HIGHAM who leaves Sam CAMPBELL beaten for pace and crosses.


GOAL! Joachim RANDE bundles the ball over the line from HIGHAM's cross and it's 1-0 to Manawatu!


Adam McGEORGE fires over the bar wildly from outside the penalty area.


Manawatu nearly make it 2-0 when Willie HODGE picks out Dale HIGHAM and HIGHAM whips in a beautiful cross that Joachim RANDE just misses with an open goal begging.


Adam THOMAS wins a corner for Auckland City but its overhit and Manawatu survive without breaking sweat.


Nice. It's starting to rain here. The last thing we need especially as I'm bringing you this update with no rain cover.


Adam THOMAS and Andrew MILNE combine to unlock the Manawatu defence but THOMAS near post cross is plucked from danger by Matt BORREN.


Matt KENNEDY looks to have gone over on his ankle but he's back on his feet and hobbling. Auckland City grab possession again. They look far from flustered here despite the scoreline.


Daniel MORGAN is giving Jono STEELE a tough evening on the left hand side. He's pacy and direct and STEELE is getting nice and tight on him. Now RANDE breaks but Adam THOMAS wins the ball back for Auckland City.


Sam CAMPBELL finds Luis CORRALES with a crisp pass. CORRALES plays first time to Adam THOMAS. McGEORGE joins in the move. Manawatu defence stays solid and its out for a throw in.


Anxious moment for Manawatu. EXPOSITO fires over a cross and Luis CORRALES goes for a spectacular finish but misses the ball. He seems to believe Nathan COOKSLEY shoved him. Protests all round by Auckland. Throw in on the far side given.


Free kick to Auckland City after a foul by Michael WHITE. Matt BORREN sets a wall on the right hand side. Auckland pile bodies into the penalty area and Manawatu mark up. Michael WHITE is injured so we have a delay.


Daniel MORGAN leathers the freekick high and wide. Goalkick.


Jono STEELE improvises an athletic clearance but Auckland City grab the second phase ball. Adam THOMAS cross is a harmless one for Matt BORREN. Goalkick.


Jono STEELE clips a nice ball over the top for Willie HODGE. Same CAMPBELL just nips in and clears. STEELE tries another cross but its too high, too powerful and Joachim RANDE won't get near it.


Alex FENERIDIS tries a switch of play to Adam THOMAS but Pablo MOYA heads clear. Auckland City applying the pressure now.


Dale HIGHAM was nearly through on goal and Liam LITTLE's tentative clearance was effective if not authoritive.


Andrew MILNE has a chance after Albert VIDAL sends him clear but the former Glasgow Rangers youngster shoots over.


Manawatu build a nice move of their own but Auckland repel the danger in numbers. They've got possession back now. YoungHeart coach Bob Sova is off his feet. I think he's kicking every ball this evening.


Auckland win another free kick in that left back area occupied by Pablo MOYA. Daniel MORGAN stands over it again.


Matt KENNEDY puts his head through MORGAN's free kick and Manawatu race out of their penalty area. Auckland have it back with Daniel MORGAN but Colin FALVEY clears again.


Andrew MILNE beats Pablo MOYA and crosses for Manel EXPOSITO.


GOAL! Manel EXPOSITO's downward header beats Matt BORREN and its 1-1!


Michael WHITE's right foot thunderbolt forces a brilliant save by Liam LITTLE. Don't be fooled, that was goal bound - Manawatu not lying down.


Matt BORREN slaps down a Manel EXPOSITO half-chance. We're closing in on halftime here. 1-1 a very fair reflection of the match so far.


Fourth official Matt CONGER and referee Matt BULL in communication presumably about time added on. Auckland City also look like making a substitution.


Long range shot is spilled by BORREN. He recovers and flicks the ball clear but only as far as the edge of the box and VIDAL's scooped effort ends up in BORREN's arms.


Joachim RANDE wins a throw-in for Manawatu near the Auckland City corner flag. Luis CORRALES is back there defending and Auckland come clear with it. Fourth official Matt CONGER indicates an additional two minutes.


Michael WHITE breaks but Alex FENERIDIS chases him down - impressive defending.


Dale HIGHAM's pace is a real asset for Manawatu as the home side counter attack - no final product for the home team.


YoungHeart Manawatu 1-1 Auckland City - A fair reflection of the first half. Manawatu may have taken a 2-0 lead into the break but instead it's level pegging. Intriguing second half in prospect.


SUBSTITUTION - 2. Angel BERLANGA leaves the field and is replaced by 20. Riki van STEEDEN for Auckland City.


Manel EXPOSITO and Daniel MORGAN combine down the left hand side but Jono STEELE quells the threat as Manawatu break.


Nathan COOKSLEY gives the ball away and the pressure goes back on the home side.


 GOAL! Daniel MORGAN's run into the box goes unchecked he picks out Andrew MILNE who scores with a tidy finish past Matt BORREN. That was surreal. Manawatu were completely static.


As has happened in previous matches, Manawatu pick the tempo up now they're trailing. A long range shot strikes an Auckland defender and Liam LITTLE picks up the rebound.


SUBSTITUTION 5. Josh CHETTLEBURGH replaces 20. Willie HODGE for YoungHeart Manawatu.


Joachim RANDE's cross is headed into the side-netting by Michael WHITE. Groans of despair from the home crowd.


Matt KENNEDY intercepts an Andrew MILNE pass and Colin FALVEY has to dig out a clearance on the edge of his own penalty area.


Alex FENERIDIS lances a clever throughball for Manel EXPOSITO but Colin FALVEY gets himself between EXPOSITO and the ball to ensure a goal kick.


Colin FALVEY has a close range volley blocked! YoungHeart Manawatu fire a second effort that grazes the crossbar. Goal kick for Auckland City.


SUBSTITUTION - 17. Adam McGEORGE is replaced by 26. Aaron BAWDEKAR for Auckland City.


Nathan COOKSLEY flicks a header on for Dale HIGHAM. Daniel MORGAN seems to have been injured challenging in the air for that ball and needs attention. Meanwhile, YoungHeart Manawatu have a free kick just outside the Auckland City penalty area. MORGAN may need to be stretchered off here. Let's hope it's not too serious.


SUBSTITUTION - 19. Daniel MORGAN replaced by 6. Stu KELLY for Auckland City.


SUBSTITUTION - 12. Joachim RANDE replaced by 16. Michael FRASER for YoungHeart Manawatu.


The pace of the match has been affected by rapid substitutions. Matt BORREN launches a free kick 2/3 of the pitch and Riki van STEEDEN heads clear. Auckland City counter attack. Adam THOMAS is tackled by COOKSLEY. Its a corner for Auckland.


Corner is headed wide by Auckland City and its a goal kick.


Stu KELLY threads a pass to Manel EXPOSITO. He tees up a chance for Luis CORRALES but the Costa Rican striker blazes his shot high over the crossbar.


Decent spell for Manawatu - they have Auckland City penned in but they can't find a cross or a decisive shot on goal. I'm no physio, by the way, but Daniel MORGAN looks to be in some degree of discomfort on the sidleine.


Manawatu sitting very deep and Luis CORRALES gets to the byline, cuts the ball back, as Nathan COOKSLEY's unsighted clearance snicks the outstretched boot of Manel EXPOSITO. That could have deflected anywhere had EXPOSITO arrived a snap sooner.


Two Manawatu players converge on the ball and their combined clearance ricochets off the back of Alex FENERIDIS and into Matt BORREN's hands.


Manel EXPOSITO robs the ball from Colin FALVEY and sets up Stu KELLY who shoots low to Matt BORREN's right. Saved comfortably.


Michael WHITE's shot balloons off Riki van STEEDEN's leg and loops out for a corner.


Michael FRASER wins a throw in for Manawatu. They launch a long ball to the far post but EXPOSITO hooks it clear from Dale HIGHAM.


Dale HIGHAM's cross is just out of reach of Michael WHITE at the far post. He was unmarked as well.


Luis CORRALES through on goal with Jono STEELE hot on his heels - offside. That was marginal.


YELLOW CARD - Matt KENNEDY, YoungHeart Manawatu.


Long range shot tipped out for a corner by Matt BORREN.


Adam COWAN heads across goal for Nathan COOKSLEY. COOKSLEY heads it into the path of Matt KENNEDY who fires a wayward shot out for a goal kick.


This match appears to be ambling toward the end - YoungHeart Manawatu get a free kick within shooting distance. Liam LITTLE sets up his wall. COOKSLEY's shot is saved easily by LITTLE.


Auckland City playing keep the ball now.


Manel EXPOSITO is through on goal, he has Stu KELLY unmarked to his right, but he shoots instead. The shot deflects off Colin FALVEY and Matt BORREN collects it. Stu KELLY remonstrates with EXPOSITO with a swing of the arms.


Fourth official Matt CONGER indicates an additional three minutes of time added on. Appeals for a penalty by Manawatu. Referee Matt BULL says no.


YELLOW CARD - Manel EXPOSITO goes into the book for a foul on Jono STEELE.


Free kick for Manawatu and they throw everyone except BORREN forward. Ball goes into the box, COOKSLEY is there, but his header has no purchase. WHITE shoots but its hacked clear. Now Auckland City break on the counter. Four on three. CORRALES fouls STEELE.


YoungHeart Manawatu 1-2 Auckland City - Hard result on the home team but the visitors just shaded it. YoungHeart need a win over Team Wellington to finish on six points and avoid Hawke's Bay United's season low of five set in 2005-06. Auckland City make it ten games unbeaten and achieve their eighth consecutive win in the ASB Premiership.