Round 11 Wrap Up | 2019 2020 Macron SFL WA7 min read
An extraordinary round of futsal, with upsets galore, on the final weekend before the Christmas break. Murdoch enter the mid-season break at the summit, with Stirling hot on their heels. Rockingham remain comfortable in 3rd, despite their 1st loss of the season. The gap from 4th to 10th is now only 5 points, with an exciting race to the Top 6 to follow. Round 12 resumes on Fri 3rd Jan 2020.
Balga FC 4 – 3 Rockingham Cambio Cumbre FC
Balga returned to winning ways last weekend to recharge their season & drag themselves back into finals contention. Cumbre came into this match undefeated, but were missing suspended spearhead Faris Noor Rani & Round 10 player-of-the-week Raul Sanchez. They did, however, have stalwart Nestor Fonseca back, to add experience to their young roster. With Captain Chandra Nagendran playing his final match before commencing his professional career with Kuala Lumpur FC, Fonseca reminded the league what they had been missing with a stunning hattrick. But those heroics were not enough as Rockingham conceded their 1st loss of the season; Balga flew out of the blocks & were on the front foot for most of the match. A brace from the impressive Graham Dixon led the way. Singles from Conor O’Driscoll & stand-in Captain Luke Ross rounded out the scoring. An impressive victory for Balga, keeping them in 9th position, but narrowing the gap to 6th to 4 points. We’re not even halfway through the season, but the race for a spot in the finals is heating up.
Perth Longobarda FC 8 – 0 Cockburn EWA FC
A night that commenced with an upset by Balga over Cumbre, continued with a massive surprise. We had predicted a close encounter, but this was a procession, with Cockburn conceding their worst ever defeat in the Macron State Futsal League. A tactical masterclass from Longobarda, picking off an understrength EWA side with effective counter-attacks, led by the proficient Alex Kretowicz with a spectacular return of 6 goals. Back-to-back hattricks in the 1st & 2nd halves made this the Alex Kretowicz Show, with Longobarda taking a 4-0 lead into half time & never looking back. Remo Capitani & a long-range effort from goalkeeper Ricardo Louro rounded out the scoring. Cockburn tried everything to score in this match, playing 5th man for long periods. But, to no avail. Not only was this their worst ever defeat, but, it was also the 1st time that they were held scoreless this season. A night to forget for EWA, but, a match to remember for Longobarda, who soared into the Top 6 & improved their goal difference too.
Perth AFC 9 – 2 Curtin Footbalista FC
An absorbing encounter with 8th placed AFC overcoming a faltering Curtin side. Languishing at the wrong end of the table, Footbalista head coach Saeed Danesh took the unprecedented move of benching his entire 1st team squad & playing the reserves (draft) in this match. And, whilst AFC feasted on the weakened side, Danesh was making the point of rewarding players who were attending training & exuding a positive attitude. Andrija Jukic maintained his terrific form, with a 4 goal performance. Nathan Thorp too impressed with a hattrick of his own. Kevin Higgins rounded off the scoring. A 5-0 half-time lead meant that this match was somewhat over by the beginning of the 2nd half. Curtin performed well in the 2nd half, with Armin Nourdel & Parham Vafaei scoring well taken replies. With their 2nd win in a row, AFC closed the gap to 6th to only 2 points. And now go into the Christmas break with renewed confidence that they can claim the 1st finals spot in their short history.
Joondalup ECU Jets 8 – 0 Canning Ultra Tigers FC
Canning were expected to test Joondalup who were missing standout goalkeeper Alex Donev, but, the returning Luke Palmateer had other ideas with a 4 goal man-of-the-match performance to stun a blunt Ultra Tigers outfit. No matter how hard they tried, Canning could not breach The Jets backline. ECU flew out of the blocks, taking a 4-0 lead by the 7th minute. Palmateer was supported by a double from Joe Higgins & singles from Jimmy Fung & Joel Jebartnam. The victory keeps Joondalup within distance of the Top 6. For Canning, though, their return to the Macron State Futsal League has not gone to plans so far. They welcome the 2 week break, and use it to recharge the batteries & come back with renewed purpose in 2020.
Stirling Braza Ginga FC 3 – 1 Byford Venom FC
Stirling were expected to brush Byford aside. But, nobody told The Venom the script as they started with determination & took an early lead via Eddie Garrido. Braza responded with a team goal finished by Pavel Parihuzic. Byford’s resolve kept them at 1-1 until half-time. A double from Stirling spearhead Victor Brauner in the 2nd half claimed the victory for the consistent Braza Ginga side, who enter the Christmas break as the only unbeaten team in the competition, and well placed to defend their title. Byford can take heart from a performance laden with courage & dedication. They are improving every week & can look forward to securing more points in the new year.
Murdoch Warriors FC 2 – 1 South Perth FC
The match-of-the-round featured table-topping Murdoch taking on in-form 5th placed South Perth. And what a feast of futsal both sides put on. South Perth loanee Aaron Yu (from Pascoe Vale PC in Melbourne), filling in for the absent Brad Kneebone, played an instrumental role in keeping a strong Murdoch side at bay for long periods of the match. Indeed, it looked like we were heading for our 1st 0-0 draw of the season, until Warriors academy product Alex Basto scored midway through the 2nd half. Luka Bergomi responded for South Perth with 5 minutes remaining, only for Murdoch to steal the points with virtually the final kick of the game, via an own-goal. A heart-breaking finish for South Perth head coach Roberto Boi. The victory maintained Murdoch’s high-flying start to the season, with their spot at the summit secured for another 3 weeks, as the league takes a break for Christmas & New Year.
Fremantle FC 0 – 1 Spearwood Lions FC
Another low scoring & highly intense match featured an understrength Fremantle succumbing to a spirited Spearwood. The Lions scored early through livewire Kelechi Nmeni & protected the lead for the rest of the match. Fielding their young squad in their long & esteemed history, Fremantle were unable to penetrate a solid Spearwood side, who, themselves were missing spearhead Jamal Yusof. The loss dropped Fremantle out of the Top 6. Meanwhile, victory means that Spearwood enter the mid-season break with renewed confidence and the gap to the Top 6 narrowed to only 4 points.