Jets v Knights

A-League report by Robert Szomolnoki
Newcastle United Jets v New Zealand Knights

The Newcastle Jets secured their first win of the season with a impressive 3-0 home win over the New Zealand Knights with a dominant display at EnergyAustralia Stadium. The win was secured by a late goals from Stuart Musilak and Milton Rodriguez after Jade North had put the Jets ahead with a 72nd minute header.

The loss for the Knights meant they go to the bottom of the competition ladder, its their sixth loss in succession and during this period they have failed to score a single goal.

New Jets coach Gary Van Egmond stuck with 19 year old Ben Kennedy over Ivan Necevski after he was finally cleared to make his A-League debut. He also had Jade North, Joel Griffiths and Vaugh Coveny return to the side.

The Knights saw the return of Che Bunce and the debut of Ghanaian midfielder Hamza Mohammed.

The Jets began the game at a very high temp with three striker up front - Rodrigues (left), Coveny (central), Griffiths (right) as early as the 2nd minute a Griffiths/North 1-2 saw North cross only for Bunce to clear from Rodriguez, the follow up corner saw Durante just fail to connect with a header.

The 6th minute saw a lopping pass put through Coveny who lobbed Turnbull but the ball went over the cross bar. Two minutes later saw Carle escape his marker at the edge of the penalty area but his shot ended in the hands of Turnbull.

The Knight's created their first chance in the 9th minute as Mohammed (who had a quite night) find Hickey at the edge of the area only for him to fire well wide.

For much of the rest of the first half the Jets dominated proceeding, the 12th minute saw a Griffiths cross to Carle who shot wide, a minute later a Thomson cross found Rodriguez who controlled the ball with his chest but volleyed over the cross bar from 5 meters out. The 17th minute saw a lofted pass from Carle into the path of Rodriguez who fired a fierce shot straight at Turnbull, a minute later Rodriguez again but this time from a acute angle fired a shot straight at Turnbull. The 23rd minute a Musilak pile driver from 25 meters goes wide.

The Jets are completely running the show as the Knights sit behind the ball and offer nothing in attack, until suddenly in the 30th minute Mohammed finds Richter who in turn flicks a pass to Banks who is in front of goal and in the clear but as he strikes the ball Coveny dives in with a goal saving tackle.

The Jets respond with two great chances in a minute, Carle beats Mohammed and pssses to Griffiths who centers for Coveny but from in fron t of goal he taps it to Turnbull. Then Coveny beats Emblem and races through on goal he draws the goal keeper but instead of scoring himself he passes to Rodriguez who is marked by Bunce who puts in a last ditch tackle.

The first half ends with a Carle/Rodriguez interchange which ends with Rodriguez hitting a low hard shot across the face of goal. During the first half the Jets had 9 shots at goal 4 on target and had 6 corners, the Knights 2 shots at goal none on target and just one corner.

The second half commences with a Carle Griffiths 1-2 end with a Carle shot straight at Turnbull. The Jets notably slow the pace down and the Knights slowly come more into the match

In the 58th minute a Rodriguez free kick is going inside the far upright but Turnbull performs a great diving save.

On the hour the Knights finally come more into the game, Hickey's shot is deflected past the upright and from the resulting corner Gemmill shots straight at Kennedy. The 68th minute sees Mohammed fire wildly over the cross bar, a minute later Casey's long run into the box and dangerous cross is missed by everyone.

The Knights were finally winning some possession and the Jets were looking frustrated as the many chances had got them no success, but then finally the turning point of the match arrived in the 72nd minute a curling Carle corner found North who had out jumped Johnson and his header found the back of the net, 1-0 Jets.

The 75th minute saw White shot for goal from close range but Kennedy was able to save brilliantly.

A Carle wonder strike from 22 meters almost broke the cross bar but the ball bounced down and away from the goal in the 80th minute. Five minutes later a clever Rodriguez pass finds Griffiths but his tame shot from 3 meters is cleared by the defence. From the resulting corner Carle finds Musilak who slips past a defender at the edge of the area and fires a 23 meter rocket into the back of the net. 2-0 Jets.

In the 91st minute Rodriguez puts Bridge through but one on one with Turnbull sees the Goal Keeper block the shot.

The game ends with Bridge playing in Rodriguez who rounds Turnbull but is left with a acute angle, he is still able to squeeze a shot between goal keeper and upright, 3-0 Jets.

The final whistle brought wild cheers from the home fans who had witnessed their side win their first win of the season.