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Play by Play / Wrap


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Auckland City FC

Team Wellington


NZFC - Round 12, Croatian Centre,  6 February 2008


Grant Young 26 
Paul Urlovic (pen) 56  




Halftime: 1-0                       Referee:  Neil Fox                              Crowd: 1000 


Young inspires Auckland to extend lead

by Bob Pearce at the Croatian Cultural Society

Grant Young (centre) gives Ben Sigmund (right) and his Auckland City teammates something to smile about. Photo: Shane Wenzlick Young may be nearer 40 than 30 but he retains the skills that make him one of the most potent strikers in the New Zealand Football Championship.

The South African scored one goal and created the other as Auckland City beat Wellington 2-0 at the Croatian Cultural Centre to increase their lead at the top of the championship table to three points.

Young's goal in the 26th minute demonstrated his skills. One of the youngest players on the field, Adam McGeorge, fed a perfect pass through the Wellington defence and with a burst of speed Young was clear.

But goalkeeper Phil Imray had charged out quickly and it needed a deft chip to elude him when lesser players might have opted to blast the ball goalwards.

Young watches his deft chip beat Phil Imray. Photo: Shane Wenzlick's second goal in the 56th minute came courtesy of an expertly taken penalty by Paul Urlovic. But Young was again the catalyst. His speed took him clear of the defence and referee Neil Fox ruled that the challenge on him by Caue Benicio was worth a penalty.

Auckland coach Colin Tuaa was thrilled by the way his team lifted their game to meet the spirited challenge of Wellington.

"We played when we had to play," he said, "and when we had to get the goals we did.

"Lots of times these games are a bit of an arm wrestle but at the moment our effort and attitude is up to the task.

"I thought Grant Young was outstanding. His goal was a lovely piece of skill because the goalie was coming out fast and it was easy for a shot to have been blocked."

Ben Sigmund (left) and Raf de Gregorio go head to head. Photo:Shane Wenzlick coach Stu Jacobs was philosophical, disappointed that his team lost but not convinced they were two goals worse than Auckland.

"We lacked the cutting edge," he said. "We got in good areas, particularly in the first half, but the final ball went astray and we didn't have a quality finish.

"It wasn't a game where they overpowered us but you've got to take your chances if you want to beat Auckland. It's disappointing to lose but we've got to bounce back against Otago."

Auckland had Ben Sigmund and Chad Coombes back from suspension and they were prominent in a midfield that bustled Wellington out of their rhythm. Ki-Hyung Lee was again impressive and young McGeorge did not look out of place at this level.

On the downside stalwart defender Greg Uhlmann injured his leg and left the field after 33 minutes, adding to the champions' long casualty list.

Wellington had their moments with Daniel Ellensohn, Graham Little and Raf de Gregorio all having half chances. But they encountered a defence quick to tackle back and goalkeeper Ross Nicholson commanding the penalty area.

Photos: Shane Wenzlick


Team Sheet

Auckland City FC


Team Wellington

1 Ross Nicholson (GK)

24 Paul Imray (GK)

2 Joel Mathews (off 69)

3 Steve Gulley

5 Ben Sigmund

6 Adam Birch

6 Ki-Hyung Lee

9 Daniel Ellensohn (off 77)

8 Chad Coombes

14 Darren Cheriton (off 59)

9 Paul Urlovic  (off 77)

15 Graham Little

10 Grant Young

16 Raf de Gregorio

15 Jeff Campbell

17 Wiremu Patrick

19 Salesh Kumar

19 Sean Douglas

20 Greg Uhlmann (off 32)

20 Cole Tinkler (off 77)

25 Adam McGeorge

21 Caue Beniciao



12 Tamati Williams (GK)

2 Sam Peters

13 Alex Feneridis (on 69)

4 Jamie Farrington (on 77)

16 George Suri (on 32)

22 Michael Eager (on 77)

26 Lance Heslop

18 Peter Halstead (on 59)

27 John Niyonsaba (on 77)

1 Simon Shone (GK)


=yellow card

=2 yellow cards

= red card


Play by Play

Fine with a slight breeze, Auckland have Sigmund and Coombes back in starting lineup. Foxie second game here in a row as ref. He was great last time, only one yellow

0 mins

Auckland playing with the wind

4 mins

First corner to Wellington, Auckland break quickly , shot by Lee well saved

7 mins

Yellow card Jeff Campbell

19 mins

Auckland struggle to clear Wellington attack, Uhlmann injured but returns after treatment

26 mins

GOAL! 1-0 Quick break by Auckland Adam McGeorge feeds Grant Young and he scores

29 mins

Chance for Ellensohn blocked by Nicholson's body, Uhlmann clears

33 mins

Substitution Auckland. Suri on for limping Uhlmann

45 mins

Two minutes of time added.

45 plus two mins

HALFTIME 1-0. Scrappy half with both sides wasting too many useful chances.

46 mins

No changes at the break. Wellington quickly on the attack through Ellensohn. Nicholson fields safely.

53 mins

Wellington left wing corner headed wide by Benicio

55 mins

Young clear, brought down by Benicio. Penalty

56 mins

GOAL! Urlovic buries penalty 2-0

59 mins

Wellington substitution Darren Cheriton off, Peter Halstead on

60 mins

Yellow card McGeorge

68 mins 

Substitution Auckland. Joel Mathews replaced by Alex Feneridis

69 mins

Campbell hits crossbar with Imray beaten

75 mins

Substitutions Wellington. Ellensohn off, Michael Eager on. Tinkler off, Farrington on.

76 mins

Substitution Auckland. Urlovic off, Niyonsaba on.

86 mins

Yellow card Douglas for backchat

90 mins

Yellow card de Gregorio for chat. Three minutes time added on

90 plus two mins

Yellow for Sigmund for tackle

90 plus three mins

FULL TIME: 2-0 Auckland to retain lead in league