1998 National Soccer League results
1997/1998 Season Round 22 Results
written by Thomas Esamie

Played (15/03/1998) Falcons Park
Referee : E Brazzale, Crowd : 2450
Gippsland Falcons
Jim Kourtis, Clayton Bell, Claudio Canosa, Manny Gotis, Nick Palamaras (Luke Cheney 75), Doug Marcina, Nick Tsaltas, Mark Foy, Archie Thompson (Billy Mitroulas 75), Brian MacNicol, Levent Osman (John Hutchinson 75)
Goals : Marcina 24, MacNicol 43
2 - 3 Wollongong City
Brett Hughes, Robert Stanton, Jason Connolly, Matthew Horsley, Anthony Surjan, Sasho Dimoski, Scott Chipperfield, George Souris, Noel Spencer, Tony Perinich (Colin Luff 88), Kosta Salapasidis (Ljupco Naumovski 82)
Goals : Salapasidis 14, Horsley 39, 71
Were it not for Brett Hughes Gippsland would have scored inside the first half minute, but the infinitely infinite outcomes derived from the what if's and could have been's in a match are not the salient points. As it turns out Wollongong opened and closed the scoring. Salapasidis benefited from a precise Perinich pass which the former slotted past the rushing keeper, it's always amusing to see the ball just barely roll over the line with 22 players looking on. The two sides alternated goals first Marcinas free kick eluded everyone on its way to the net, then Scott Chipperfield found the obliging head of Matt Horsley before Gippsland again drew level with MacNicol blasting home a poor clearing header from a corner. Horsley finally concluded the days scoring when he collected a Chipperfield pass and ran at the defence, found his mark and shot truly to score the winner.

Played (13/03/1998) Topper Stadium
Referee : M Breeze, Crowd : 2837
Newcastle Breakers
Brad Swancott, Glen Sprod, Shane Pryce, Todd McManus, Robert Ironside, Peter Ritchie (Mark Wilson 88), Clayton Zane, Reece Tollenaere, Jason Bennett, Leo Langone (Matthew Lowe 75), Eddy Bosnar
0 - 0 Adelaide City
Jason Petkovic, Bradley Armour (Dino Mennillo 88), Mark Yates, Milan Ivanovic, Alex Tobin, Angelo Costanzo, Damian Mori, John Gibson, Kris Trajanovski, Michael Brooks (Travis Dodd 72), Scott Thomas
Newcastle are nothing if not dogged fighters. While Newcastle had some good chances it was Adelaide who dictated play for most of the game and perhaps feel a little hard done by. Swancott and Petkovic both shining lights for their respective sides.

Played (15/03/1998) Knights Stadium
Referee : S Micallef, Crowd : 3902
Melbourne Knights
Joe Didulica, Ante Kovacevic, Ivan Jolic, Ransford Banini, Andrew Marth, Tom Pondeljak, Ivan Kelic, Zeljko Susa, Dragi Nastevski, John Didulica (Zoran Markovski 83), Ante Deak
Goals : Kelic 26, Marth 66
2 - 0 Brisbane Strikers
Clint Bolton, Chris Zoricich, Craig Williams, Sean Cranney, Troy Cranney, Mark Battistin, Andrew Brayshaw (Danny Invincible 50), Jeromy Harris (Wayne Srhoj 75), Royce Brownlie, Andrew Harper, Gary Blackford
It was the grand final replay from last season and the home side won 2-0 again. The only difference was that this time the game took place in Melbourne. John Didulica's pass to Ante Deak was inch perfect but Deak's shot was about an inch wide as it came back off the near post. In the melee Ivan Kelic sauntered in to score the opening goal. Andrew Marth increased the lead when a long throw made its way to him and he volleyed the ball into the roof of the net from a tight angle.

Played (13/03/1998) Belmore Oval
Referee : G Leverton, Crowd : 3588
UTS Olympic
Bob Catlin, Adam Ciantar, Ante Juric, Scott Baillie, Norman Tome, Peter Tsekenis, Brett Emerton, Chris Kalantzis (Elias Augerinos 78), Walter Ardone, Nick Carle (Derek Poimer 65), Leo Carle (Kain Rastall 76)
Goals : Tome 5, N Carle 28, L Carle 75pk
3 - 2 Carlton
Dean Anastasiadis, Sean Douglas, Con Anthopoulos, Kresimir Marusic (Vlado Mirkovic 56), Lubomir Lapsansky, Andrew Vlahos, Simon Colosimo, David Cervinski, Mark Atkinson (Vince Grella 85), Marco Bresciano, Adrian Cervinski
Goals : Vlahos 53, Mirkovic 66
A resurgent Olympic were at it again as they disposed of finals hopefuls Carlton. Norman Tome got the early goal when Emerton broke down the left flank and his cross eluded Anastasiadis and gave Tome a simple tap in. Nick Carle then combined with Tsekenis for the 2-0 UTS lead, one wonders what sort of league we would have if more of our promising youngsters stayed in the country for a few seasons before seeking fortune or fame overseas, but I digress. Carlton came back when Mark Atkinson took a long range shot which hit Vlahos and looped over Catlin into the net. I'm more inclined to award the goal to Atkinson but everyone else says Vlahos so I guess it's Vlahos eventhough he knew roughly nothing about it. Yugoslav import Vlado Mirkovic then came off the bench and scored after combining with Lapsansky to even the score. The score stayed even until Anastasiadis rushed out to meet the ball Derek Poimer was chasing and was penalised when the latter fell in the inevitable collision. Leo Carle made the brotherly connection work for UTS once more. Nick and Leo's combined ages add up to 33...

Played (15/03/1998) Hindmarsh Stadium
Referee : B Hugo, Crowd : 2447
Adelaide Sharks
David Miller, Frank Tibaldi, Alex Kuzmanovic, Branko Milosevic, Con Kokkinoplitis (Corey Artone 46), Richie Alagich, Andrew Borghetto (Adrian Iandorio 85), Paul Pezos, John Cutillo (Aaran Westervelt 90+), Bill Misailidis, Alex Duric
Goal : Duric 5
1 - 0 Perth Glory
Anthony Franken, Vinko Buljubasic, Garteh Naven, Scott Miller, Paul Strudwick, Slobodan Despotovski, Samson Siasia (Scott Halpin 77), Danny Hay, Anthony Carbone, Troy Halpin, Vas Kalogeracos (Ernie Tapai 46)
A single goal was enough to decide the game, and again the first goal came early. A corner, Alagich swings it in and Duric rises above the pack (and more importantly over the approaching Franken) to head the ball in. Perth tested the home side and they appear to have got the pass, Perth played well and also could have just as easily fallen behind as drawn level.

Played (14/03/1998) Marconi Stadium
Referee : G Connolly, Crowd : 7362
Ante Covic, Domenic Longo, Christian Care (Luke Casserly 53), Darren McDonald, Brad Maloney, Zeljko Babic, Francis Awaritefe (Song Chul Yoon 81), Brendan Renaud (Mauro van Cuylenberg 85), Pan Keun Kim, Vlado Zoric, Mike Smith
Goal : Renaud 67
1 - 0 Sydney United
Andrew Crews, David Barrett, Mark Rudan, Robert Hooker, Joe Vrkic, Joe Moric (Velimir Kupresak 46), Peter Bennett (Mile Sterjovski 75), Paul Bilokapic (Jason Culina 59), Marcus Philips, Abbas Saad, Mario Jerman
It was an entertaining game with much at stake for both sides, not least of which local pride with the sides as close together as Everton and Liverpool, and roughly of the same fondness for one another. Both sides had good chances to score but by hook or by crook were foiled each time, serving to heighten the tension of the game. The goal finally came and it took several replays to absorb what happened. Maloney played the ball wide to Casserly whose cross could only just be palmed away by the keeper Andrew Crews. Crews chased the errant ball but was beaten to it by Renaud who dribbled past Crews' flailing arms and shot for goal, only to see the ball deflected by Kupresak's balding dome but still sneak into goal.

Played (16/03/1998) Bruce Stadium
Referee : B McKay, Crowd : 3471
Canberra Cosmos
Anthony Giannasca, Paul Dee, Andrew Roberts, Andrew Ravanello (Tom Haythornthwaite 61), Ante Moric, Gordon Hunter, Norman Kelly, Michael Musitano (Dale Wingell 86), Peter Buljan (Marko Perinovic 88), Toplica Popovich, Damien Brown
Goals : Hunter 44
1 - 1 South Melbourne
Michael Petkovic, Steve Iosifidis, Fausto de Amicis, Con Blatsis, Steve Panopoulos, Vaughan Coveny (Con Boutsianis 65), Paul Trimboli, Bill Damianos, Goran Lozanovski, Tansel Baser (George Goutzioulis 90), John Anastasiadis (Michael Curcija 80)
Goals : Coveny 34
Canberra were now with Rale Rasic at the coaching helm but that failed to halt South Melbourne when they opened the scoring as Damianos and Coveny combined, more out of luck than good management I should add, for an opportunistic goal. Canberra's reply just before the halftime whistle came from a free kick which Alan Hunter managed to sidefoot volley into the goal.