PS4NPLNNSW Round 19: Hamilton Olympic travel away to Weston

Weston Bears v Hamilton Olympic
2.30pm Sunday 23rd July at Rockwell Automation Park

Last Meeting: Round 8, 2017: Hamilton 2 Weston 0 at Darling Street Oval.
Ladder: Weston 11th (7), Hamilton 4th (31)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Hamilton – Won Eagles 1-0 (h), Won Blues 2-1 (a), Won Jets 2-1 (a)

Weston – Lost Jets 0-1 (a), Lost Magpies 2-3 (h), Lost Rosebud 0-2 (h)

Bottom Line

If the wooden spoon is to be avoided by the Bears, it is becoming must-win territory after last weekend’s tight defeat to the Jets Youth.

Weston deserved to hold their heads up high last Tuesday when they harassed and harried the Newcastle Jets A-League side at Weston.

It seemed that performance would be the catalyst for them to get some victories and climb off the bottom of the table in their remaining five matches.

But, again on the weekend the Bears couldn’t quite do the job against the Jets Youth. An unfortunate own goal scored by Jordan Jackson put them behind the eight ball early and they just couldn’t find a route back into the match.

This weekend a strong and physical Hamilton side are in town, brimming with confidence after a victory over Edgeworth last weekend. It will be another tough test for the young Bears.

While Olympic haven’t been at their best this season, three points have been achieved with monotonous regularity through the back half of the season.

Hamilton have lost just one of their last 12 and now incredibly sit just two points off top spot.

Michael Bolch got his wish and Olympic were flying heavily undetected, under the radar. That was until last weekend.

This weekend, the spotlight is back on Olympic. But, the margins are so tight. With three points separating first from fifth, winning is essential if Hamilton want to sure up their spot in the finals.

Hamilton have to be favourites, but Weston at home are always a tricky proposition.

What the Coaches Said:

Steve Piggott (Weston)

“We played them last time, it was a lot closer than what people might think. They scored a penalty, we gave them a goal, I think Greg Anderson was in both of those situations. Passed back to the goalie from three yards out and Kane Goodchild tapped it in. We self-destructed there. But, again we’ve got to stop them dominating.”

“Reece Papas has got good feet and good vision. The Swan boys have been on fire for them. They did a bit of a job on the weekend. They are a good team and probably a little more buoyant from their 1-0 victory over Edgeworth. They’ve got everything to play for, we’ll be looking to keep our form coming back into this week’s match and look for a point again.”

Michael Bolch (Hamilton)

“They [Weston] are a good young side. Steve [Piggott] is redeveloping up there and while they haven’t won a great deal of games, they have been competitive in every game they’ve played. These games are dangers for us. If you go back the last three years and we have beaten Edgeworth at this time of the year in the last three years and then you’ll find the next game we drop points straight away.”

“From the last couple of years, we’ve been on that big of a high after beating and going top of the league we’ve probably lost a bit of focus on the next game coming up. Our biggest thing this weekend is making sure we are mentally up for the game. I’m sure a few boys are looking to see where they [Weston] are on the table and that’s the complacency that sets it. We’ve just got to harp on it all week, about how important the game is.”

Key: The last two seasons Hamilton haven’t backed up victories over Edgeworth with three points the week after. Can they buck that trend on Sunday?

U20s Weston – Hamilton Olympic Sunday 23rd  July kick off 12.30 am Rockwell Automation

U18s Weston – Hamilton Olympic Sunday 23rd  July kick off 10.45 am Rockwell Automation


U13s North Coast Football vs Olympic Sunday 23rd July kick off 1.00 pm at Coffs Sport & Leisure Park

U14s North Coast Football vs Olympic Sunday 23rd July kick off 3.00 pm at Coffs Sport & Leisure Park


Lake Macquarie Roosters v Maitland Magpies
2.30pm Sunday 23rd July at Macquarie Field

Last Meeting: Round 8, 2017: Maitland 1 Lakes 0 at Cooks Square Park.
Ladder: Lakes 7th (22), Maitland 6th (25)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):
Maitland – Drew Phoenix 2-2 (a), Won Bears 3-2 (a), Lost Eagles 1-2 (h)

Lakes – Lost Jets 0-5 (a), Won Rosebud 3-1 (h), Won Blues 2-0 (h)

Bottom Line

It’s a case of last chance saloon for the Magpies this weekend, with anything less than a victory against the Roosters extinguishing their hopes of a finals appearance.

Last weekend, a frustrating draw with a ten-man Valentine increased the gap between Maitland and the top four to six points.

It’s been a difficult period for the Magpies, who since beating Broadmeadow 7-0 in round nine, have won just three of their eight matches since.

After that victory, Maitland sat second on the ladder and it has been a downward slide ever since, as they have slipped to sixth.

Lake Macquarie will celebrate Old Boy’s Day on Sunday and will be keen for a victory to send both their past and present players home in good spirits.

The Roosters had the bye last weekend before meeting the Jets Youth on Tuesday night, where they were dismantled 5-0.

However, before the weekend off the Roosters had an improved run of form, following a mid-season slump.

They won just one of eight matches through the middle portion of the season and experienced a similar slide on the ladder to the Magpies. After four rounds, Lakes were first, but now sit seventh.

Lakes then won two straight, including a 3-1 victory over Adamstown Rosebud where they rocketed out of the blocks to lead 3-0 inside the opening 31 minutes, before the defeat to the Jets.

With their season on the line, Maitland are expected to win on Sunday, but on Old Boy’s Day and with striker Sam Walker re-discovering his early season form in recent weeks, the Roosters will push the Magpies all the way.

What the Coaches Said:

Anthony Richards (Lakes)

“We’ve just got to make sure we don’t give them opportunities to run at us. We’ve got to cut them down before they wind up, not illegally, but, get tight on them so they don’t get that free space. That’ll be our plan to try and limit the amount of free space that they get. You can’t do it for 100% of the game and eventually those guys get free and they are dangerous.”

“Not a lot to be honest [changed during our two wins]. We are taking our chances which is taking a bit of pressure off us defensively. Once we are taking our chances it is helping us. It’s not just Sam Walker scoring goals either. Tommy Sparre and Justin Broadley is back in the team and playing.”

Phil Dando (Maitland)

“You just have to go about your business as normal and let everything take care of itself. You can’t go out and say we absolutely must win this, because I think it puts too much pressure on you. You just have to go and do the best you can and hopefully it’s good enough. I keep saying, I keep telling them, on our day our football is as good as anyone going around. Hopefully we do enough to get the right result.”

“They [Lakes] were well organised and they are an enthusiastic side who look to play football. They are looking to do all the right things, and are tough to break down. We only beat them 1-0 and we pinched a ball and broke away and scored the goal. It’s going to be tense as it was in the first game.”

Key: It’s do or die. Can Maitland keep their season alive?

Lambton Jaffas v Adamstown Rosebud
2.30pm Saturday 22nd July at Arthur Edden Oval

Last Meeting: FFA Cup, Round 5, 2017: Adamstown 0 Lambton 1 at Adamstown Oval.
Ladder: Lambton 2nd (33), Adamstown 9th (13)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Lambton – Drew Blues 2-2 (h), Lost Magic 1-3 (a), Won Roosters 3-1 (h)

Adamstown – Lost Magic 0-3 (a), Lost Roosters 1-3 (a), Won Phoenix 4-2 (h)

Bottom Line

A spluttering Lambton Jaffas side meet Adamstown Rosebud in the opening match of round 19 of the PlayStation®4 NPL Northern NSW this Saturday.

The Jaffas have lost form just at the wrong time of their campaign, and they have won just one of their last four to fall from top spot on the ladder and lose the initiative in the race for the minor premiership.

Injuries crippled Lambton on the weekend against Charlestown including Joel Griffiths (calf), Luke Remington (hip flexor), Nathan Morris (knee) and Pat Brown (elbow).

The injuries forced Lambton to play the final minutes with just ten men, and adds to the already injured Jobe Wheelhouse (ankle) on the sidelines.

Wheelhouse has proved to be a significant loss for Lambton who have won just two of five in his absence.

Their opponents Adamstown seemed to be heading in the right direction after consecutive victories over Weston and Valentine.

However, in recent weeks, defeats to Lake Macquarie where they didn’t show up in the opening half-hour and a 3-0 loss to Broadmeadow last weekend have stalled their progress.

Like Lambton, the loss of key players Alex Read, Dayne Pawlik and Justin Tannock didn’t help the Rosebuds cause against Magic.

With Lambton looking so comfortable for much of the season, what hasn’t been discussed is the chance of the slipping out of the top four.

Defeat on Saturday opens the door to that possibility, which would have been unthinkable just a few weeks ago.

What the Coaches Said:

James Pascoe (Lambton)

“Last week for the third time this year, we cleared the bench by about the hour mark and had to because of injury and then picked up a fourth injury after that, so we were down to ten men for the last 25 minutes.

“But, regardless don’t use that as an excuse in any way shape or form. People still have to adjust to different roles if they are asked to do that. We put bits and pieces of good performances together across the last two or three weeks, but we haven’t quite put together a strong 45 minutes in either half, so that is what we are looking for this weekend.”

“All I asked the boys to do is to concentrate, to work as hard as they can and to look forward, don’t look backwards. As far as I’m concerned after Edgeworth dropped those three points last week, we are playing for the minor premiership, we are not playing for survival in the top four. That has to be our mind-set. It’s the mind-set of people that want to be successful and we certainly want to be that, so that’s how we will be approaching things.”

Nick Webb (Adamstown)

“[Lambton] are obviously up there and on their day they are as good as any team. We’ve just got to match them in the enthusiasm I think. I still truly believe that we were unlucky against Magic. Ruben [Zadkovich] can say what he likes but, the truth is we had two cleared of the line and should have scored in the first five minutes and then it’s a different ball game. But, you’ve got to score goals to win and that’s what you’ve got to do. They scored some good goals and Kale [Bradbury] obviously changed that game for them.”

“We aren’t that bad, we just need a bit of luck at the minute. To be honest they were really disappointed after the game. That was the first time I saw a real desire to win [on the weekend]. They were disappointed not to get something out of it. We’ve got to take that confidence, because it wasn’t a bad performance, into Jaffas.”

 Key: Can Lambton find some much-needed form, confidence and come out of the clash injury-free?

Charlestown City Blues v Edgeworth Eagles
6pm Saturday 22nd July at Lisle Carr Oval

Last Meeting: Round 8, 2017: Edgeworth 2 Charlestown 0 at Jack McLaughlan Oval.
Ladder: Charlestown 8th (16), Edgeworth 1st (33)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Charlestown – Drew Jaffas 2-2 (a), Lost Olympic 1-2 (h), Lost Roosters 0-2 (a)

Edgeworth – Lost Olympic 0-1 (a), Won Jets 4-1 (h), Won Magpies 2-1 (a)

Bottom Line

Edgeworth will be aiming to return to the winner’s circle and keep ahead in the minor premiership race when they face Charlestown in the first Saturday evening fixture since April.

Last weekend Edgeworth were ground down by Hamilton, who simply gave them no room to work with on the small Darling Street pitch.

The Eagles chances were few and far between and the only goal came courtesy of a penalty from the boot of Kane Goodchild.

The fixture is the beginning of what will be a busy week for the Eagles, who play three matches.

After the match with Charlestown, they will play South Melbourne in the Westfield FFA Cup Round of 32 in Melbourne, before meeting Weston at home next Saturday.

While Edgeworth have a busy end to the season, Charlestown have a relative light one by comparison. The Blues have just three matches left this season, with finals now mathematically impossible.

They have showed grit and determination against top four sides in their last two matches, going down 2-1 to Hamilton in round 17, before last weekend sharing the points with Lambton Jaffas.

Blues striker Rene Ferguson is having a season to remember, finding the back of the net ten times this season, and has scored in his last two matches.

Ferguson sits just two goals off the top of the Golden Boot standings and is every chance of reaching top spot by season’s end.

Ferguson will no doubt cause problems for an Edgeworth side who will be keen to bounce back from last weekend’s disappointment. With that in mind they head into the clash as strong favourites.

What the Coaches Said:

Shane Pryce (Charlestown)

“I was ecstatic [after the Lambton result last weekend]. We were playing obviously, the leaders at the time and the players were immense on the day for me. Playing the leaders away from home and we went out and took the game to them and I was proud of the effort.”

“Obviously, with the change that is coming there is still uncertainty for some players. I think when something like that happens with so long to go, it’s easy just to throw your hands up in the air and say, ‘what the hell’ or ‘why are we still doing this’ so to speak with not making the semis or being a chance. Full credit to the guys who are turning up to training and turning up to play on the weekend and giving it there all. I’m happy with that.”

Damian Zane (Edgeworth)

“They [Charlestown] have been very good. They seem to have injected a few young guys and instead of possibly having senior guys who haven’t much to play for, instead they’ve got younger guys who have got a chance. When I took over, every young guy was working hard trying to impress me, so they’d be doing the same trying to impress [incoming coach] Dave Tanchevski.”

“[It will be] not very difficult [to make sure they focus on this weekend and not the FFA Cup]. Because, if you saw our shed after the game [against Olympic] they were shattered. I had a couple of boys apologise for their performance. I said ‘hey, don’t apologise, you’ve had a one off poor game.’ That’s just the standard they have set. Originally, I set the bar and they sort of maintain it. I don’t think [focus] will be an issue.”

Key: With the minor premiership on the line can Damian Zane’s Eagles win these crunch matches as they have the last two seasons?


PS4 NPL NNSW Round 18: Hamilton Olympic 2 points off top spot after 1-0 win over Edgeworth

Hamilton Olympic 1 (Goodchild (p) 28’) defeated Edgeworth Eagles 0 at Darling Street Oval.

A miraculous comeback wasn’t required this weekend from Hamilton Olympic in the ‘Match of the Round’ as they hit the front early and stayed there against Edgeworth in a gritty 1-0 victory at home.

Kane Goodchild scored the only goal of the match in the 28th minute and from there Olympic grounded their way to three crucial points, which would have felt like gold to coach Mick Bolch.

The match was tight and tense to start with, and both sides couldn’t find a way through.

Bolch made an interesting tactical move before the match, pushing Rhys Cooper up front to play alongside Kane Goodchild and moved Scott Smith back to the bench.

Cooper was a constant threat for the Edgeworth defence, as Hamilton gained the ascendancy midway through the half.

A free-kick won on the right edge was whipped in by new-signing Reece Papas, and was too heavy as it curled past the back post. But, in attempting to shadow the ball out, Eagles skipper Josh Evans got his arm in the way.

After a quick consultation with his assistant, James Cleal pointed to the spot and Goodchild finished his second penalty after he had to re-take the initial spot-kick after Cooper encroached on the area.

Edgeworth got themselves back in the arm-wrestle after going behind, but couldn’t find a way through Olympic’s stout defence led by the outstanding Kyle Hodges, who was imperious all afternoon.

After the break, both sides got back to the grind. Neither created many chances of note, with the Eagles best falling to Brody Taylor with a head at the back post. But, it was straight at Olympic keeper Tyler Warren.

Eagles coach Damian Zane went to three at the back for Edgeworth and threw on Adam Cawley, Bren Hammel and Will Bower, but they couldn’t find a way through.

After weeks of fightbacks, Hamilton showed their ability to get in front, and stay there and the three points now leaves them just two points off top spot.

Olympic coach Michael Bolch felt the match was like “finals football”.

“Both teams felt each other out. We went in there with a defensive shape to stifle them a bit through the middle of the park.

“They do really well with their rotations through their tens and their nines up front. We learnt a bit when we got beat by them in the FFA Cup and tried to clog those channels up a little bit.”

“I thought we created chances, I don’t know if they really created a clear-cut chance. I thought structurally we were outstanding all day.”

Bolch also praised his captain Kyle Hodges.

“He put his hand up after the FFA Cup game [against Edgeworth]. If you watch three or four of their goals, our centre-backs weren’t even in the picture. They got dragged out of the backline all day. He was colossal today.”

Zane felt his side were poor.

“First half, no composure and just application we weren’t hungry enough,” Zane said.

Zane thought the talk about the looming Westfield FFA Cup before the match had an impact on his side.

“When you’ve got the [FFA] Cup. I know some teams say it isn’t, but it is a distraction. I missed Friday’s session to go to Melbourne to have a look at [South Melbourne].

“The players know if I’m not at a session, they know what is going on and they probably start talking and without even realising you are forgetting about the actual job you have to do this.”

He also felt a loss wasn’t the worst thing for Edgeworth at the moment.

“I think you need a loss every now and then, so maybe it wasn’t a bad thing.”

Under 20s Olympic won 5-1
Under 18s Olympic won 6-1

NPL Youth
Olympic vs Charlestown
Under 16s Olympic won 8-0
Under 15s Olympic won 6-2
Under 14s Olympic won 5-0
Under 13s Olympic won 6-0

Zone League 2
Olympic vs Maryland Fletcher
1st Grade Maryland won 0-2
2nd Grade Maryland won 0-3

NET results
Under 12s Olympic defeated Maitland 11-0
Under 11s Olympic defeated by Magic 0-2

Olympic Junior Results
Under 15a Olympic defeated by Nelson Bay 0-1
Under 13a Olympic drew with New Lambton
Under 12b Olympic defeated Singleton 2-1


Valentine Phoenix 2 (Pettit 38’, Brown 72’) drew with Maitland Magpies 2 (Thompson (p) 16’, Dutton-Black 58’) at Cahill Oval.

They were a man down, a goal down and staring down the barrel of defeat, but Valentine refused to go down as they produced a backs-to-the-wall display against Maitland on Saturday.

Level at 1-1 at halftime, the second half started terribly for the home side as Valentine’s Josh Carroll was sent off just seconds after the break, following a push in the back of Maitland skipper Carl Thornton.

Maitland took full advantage in the 58th minute when Ryan Clarke darted down the left edge of the box and squared a low ball to an unmarked Josh Dutton-Black at the back post for slotted his third goal in two weeks.

Matt Thompson then controlled the midfield with the Phoenix down to ten men and it seemed there would be only one result – a Maitland victory.

However, no one told Jalon Brown, who against the run of play scored a wonderful goal from distance to make it 2-2 in the 72nd minute.

Not much was happening for the Phoenix until Brown got on the ball and unleashed from 30 metres out on his left boot.

Both sides had some late chances, but neither could breakthrough as the match ended locked at 2-2.

Earlier Matt Thompson got the Magpies off to a dream start when he dispatched a spot-kick after Ryan Clarke was brought down in the box.

Valentine centre-back Reece Pettit equalised just before half-time after Maitland failed to clear a Phoenix corner and Pettit headed the ball over Matt Trott to make it 1-1 at the break.

The victory consolidated Valentine’s spot in the top four, while Maitland now needs to win their final four matches to be any chances of making the finals.

Magpies coach Phil Dando praised the Phoenix for their determination with only ten men.

“All credit to them. They worked hard, we knew they would keep going for 90 minutes even with the ten.

“We knew they’ve got some quality with Brown as I mentioned the other day. He’s different class when he gets away there and gets a sniff in front of goal. In the end, he was the difference.

“Unfortunately, in recent weeks, we’ve conceded two most weeks and while ever we are doing that we are not going to win the majority of games.”

Phoenix coach Darren Sills was proud how his side “dug deep for each other in some trying circumstances”.

“I’m bitterly disappointed with a number of issues that went on, on that park today, none from my players. I thought my players did tremendously well, and I believe with an even share of luck we could have stolen all three points today.

“We started in November and you go through a process, every team is the same, they work hard, they work very, very hard.

“The thing is we work hard, and we know the rules, we know what to do. We don’t try and flaunt the rules of the game and we get a player sent off for whatever reasons, and we are down to ten men for 50 minutes.”

Lambton Jaffas 2 (Brown 48’, Sullini (og) 56’) drew with Charlestown City Blues 2 (Ferguson 14’, Casciaroli 68’) at Arthur Edden Oval.

Lambton Jaffas spluttering late season form continued on Saturday against Charlestown in a controversial contest at Arthur Edden Oval.

The match threatened to boil over just after the interval when an incident involving Cameron Sullini and Pat Brown fired up the opposing sides.

The plucky Blues would not leave the star-studded Jaffas alone, as they fought tooth and nail for a share of the points. Rene Ferguson was the star for the Blues, netting his 10th goal of the season.

In a superb move which he started in Charlestown’s half, Rene Ferguson played a diagonal ball forward to Daniel Bartlett on the left edge.

Bartlett returned the favour, threading a pass through for Ferguson down the left edge, and as Jaffas keeper Brad Swancott approached quickly, Ferguson neatly swept home the opening goal.

Both sides traded blows for the next 30 minutes, but neither could make an impact on the scoreboard.

That was until Pat Brown scored his first goal since round five after Riley McNaughton sent in a flat, pinpoint cross from the right side, which Brown thumped home.

A minute later though and Brown’s afternoon was about to turn sour as he reinjured his left elbow when Blues captain Cameron Sullini fell on top of him after a challenge.

Brown left the park and Ryan Griffiths entered the fray. A little over five minutes later and the Jaffas hit the front.

Luke Remington weaved his way down the left edge, ran along the by-line and squared a ball towards Joel Griffiths, but Sullini’s boot was first to the ball and he prodded it over his own goal line.

Howls of protest ensued as Charlestown players believed the ball had crossed the byline but the goal stood and Lambton led 2-1.

Charlestown were then given the opportunity to lock up the match in the 63rd minute after Bartlett was taken down in the box by a sliding tackle from Michael Sessions. However, Swancott has other ideas saving Dan Casciaroli’s spot kick.

The Blues wouldn’t have to wait long for the equaliser as Ferguson muscled his way inside the box, squared a ball to Bartlett, whose shot hit Casciaroli, and the Blues midfielder controlled the ball and slotted to make it 2-2.

On this occasion, it was the Jaffas bench who protested, appealing about a handball, but referee Ryan Gallagher would hear none of it, and awarded the goal.

Neither side could find a winner, in the final 20 minutes and the points were shared.

Jaffas coach James Pascoe told The Newcastle Herald post-match that “it was one of the most bizarre games” he and opposition coach Shane Pryce had sat through, in relation to refereeing decisions.

“Refs are human and they make mistakes but just the volume of incidents that appeared clear-cut to everyone on the ground that ended up going the other way. It was for and against both teams though.

“It was a strange, strange game.”

The afternoon was further soured for the Jaffas by injuries to Joel Griffiths (calf), Luke Remington (hip flexor) and Nathan Morris (knee), in addition to Pat Brown (elbow).

Lambton are also still waiting for Jobe Wheelhouse (ankle) to return from injury after he went down in the Westfield FFA Cup a month ago.

Newcastle Jets Youth 1 (Jackson (og) 9’) defeated Weston Bears 0 at Rockwell Automation Park.

Jets Youth coach Lawrie McKinna felt his side deserved to win against Weston as the young Jets recorded their first victory under their new coach.

The victory took them five points clear of bottom-placed Weston and should all-but-assured that they avoid finishing bottom this season.

The Jets Youth only took nine minutes to open their account, in what was the only goal of the match.

Kaleb Cox played a neat one-two with Cameron Joice as the Jets played a short corner. Cox chipped a cross, over the face of goal, which Jets defender and skipper Pat Langlois got a head to.

The slight deflection of the head of Langlois took Bears defender Jordan Jackson by surprise, who couldn’t get out of the way of the ball, and in the end knocked the ball into his own net.

It was the only goal of the afternoon, in a match, McKinna felt his side controlled from the outset.

“First half we did really well, second half Weston came out late in the game. Overall, we deserved the win. It was just great for the boy’s confidence as well.”

“We dominated most of the first half. Second half, we were kind of well on top, but Weston started to have a go. Tristan [Esquilant] in goals never really had many out-and-out saves to make.

“But, in saying that the last 15 minutes we were under a bit of pressure and hung on a little bit, we stopped playing with the same kind of purpose.”

McKinna singled out defender Pat Langlois for special praise.

“Patty, he was outstanding again. He played with the first team on Tuesday against Weston and was outstanding.

“We will not be using him on Tuesday for our game against Lake Macquarie. He will be playing in the first team on Wednesday.”

The match against the Roosters on Tuesday night will be the Jets Youth sides’ last in the PlayStation®4 NPL NNSW until they return from the Weifang Cup in China. The side flies out to China on Thursday.

Broadmeadow Magic 3 (Bradbury 38’, 81’ Virgili 72’) defeated Adamstown Rosebud 0 at Adamstown Oval.

Broadmeadow recorded their eighth straight win and roared to within three points of the top of the table with a 3-0 victory over Adamstown Rosebud on Sunday afternoon.

A super strike from Kale Bradbury got the scoring started for Magic in the first-half and James Virgili along with Bradbury sealed the three points in the second half.

Adamstown kept Broadmeadow at bay for much of the first-half until Bradbury unleashed a rocket from the left edge of the penalty area.

Bradbury stepped past two defenders and onto his right, before unleashing from 45 degrees on the left – a shot which powered into the top right corner in a split-second.

Magic’s second came with less than 20 minutes left, as Mitch Oxborrow launched a long ball which Virgili raced onto the end of and finished wonderfully – in a carbon copy of the goal he scored last weekend against the Jaffas.

Bradbury’s third goal in the 81st minute was the icing on the cake for Magic after a goal-mouth scramble. Shane Paul’s shot was saved into the post by Rosebud keeper Riley Hill and Bradbury tapped home the crumbs.

Broadmeadow coach Ruben Zadkovich was delighted with the result but was surprised by Adamstown’s lack of attacking intent.

“The game started and they just went straight back into this negative block,” Zadkovich said.

“I don’t really know what the aim of their plan was, whether it was just to frustrate us or spoil the party.

“It makes no sense to me when you are a time that has got nothing to lose. Very negative from them.

“They didn’t offer anything really, and we just kept peppering and peppering and eventually it took a special goal from Kale [Bradbury] to break them down and once that happened that was it.”

Zadkovich was very happy with how his side controlled the match.

“Chance after chance after chance all game. Won 3-0, should have been six, seven, eight. We totally dominated. It was very comfortable.”

While disappointed with the result, Rosebud coach Nick Webb was proud of his side, who were without three of their most experienced players.

“To be honest I was really happy with our whole set-up. If we had taken some of the opportunities that were there it would be a different game, to be honest.”

“They certainly had their opportunities, but so did we and in the end class rules in the end.

“It was a special goal from Kale Bradbury to break the deadlock when we were set up really well in how we wanted to play.

“Then [Mitch] Oxborrow got on the ball and launched a 70-metre long ball that our keeper should have come out to get and then the third one was a scrappy goal in the goal-mouth.

“We got three cleared off the line today and there were other ones that we should have scored. Over all the games that I have coached, I am actually proud of the effort today more than any.”


PS4 NPL NNSW Round 18: Hamilton Olympic take on Edgeworth Eagles

Hamilton Olympic v Edgeworth Eagles
2.30pm Sunday 16th July at Darling Street Oval
“Match of the Round”

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Edgeworth 1 Hamilton 1 at Darling Street Oval.
Ladder: Hamilton 4th (28pts), Edgeworth 1st (33)
Last 3 Starts (most recent first):
Edgeworth – Won Jets 4-1 (h), Won Magpies 2-1 (a), Won Rosebud 3-0 (a)

Hamilton – Won Blues 2-1 (a), Won Jets 2-1 (a), Drew Magpies 2-2 (h)

Bottom Line

For the third time this season Hamilton takes on Edgeworth and over the last three seasons, fixtures between these two sides have been the most eagerly anticipated.

While Hamilton don’t seem as close to the premiership race as they were over the past two seasons, a win over the Eagles this weekend will incredibly put them within two points of top spot.

Olympic come into the match on the back of two straight victories, and two last-gasp victories, instilling themselves as the competitions comeback kings. Last weekend, two goals in the final 17 minutes ensured three points against Charlestown.

It was the third match in a row Olympic have scored in the final 15 minutes to get a result.

It is fascinating that while Olympic are the league’s most potent side in the final 15 minutes of matches – scoring 10 and conceding just two – their opponents Edgeworth are the PlayStation ® National Premier Leagues (NPL) NNSW’s best defensive side in the final 15 minutes.

They haven’t conceded once in the PS4 NPL this season and have scored four of their own.

While these statistics show that Hamilton won’t be able to leave it late against the Eagles, what is hidden is their Westfield FFA Cup match at Darling Street.

Scott Smith scored in the 80th minute for Olympic in their 4-2 defeat. It is the only goal leaked by Edgeworth in the final 15 minutes in all matches this season, which muddies the water on this match a little.

What is clear though is Edgeworth’s form. It is white hot. They have won 13 of their last 14 in all competitions and come into the match on the back of a 4-1 thumping of the Jets Youth last week.

Another cracking contest awaits. Edgeworth deservedly are the favourites, but never write off Olympic at Darling Street, a place where they have lost just four of their last 43 league season matches.

What the Coaches Said:

Mick Bolch (Hamilton)

“[Edgeworth] have got dangers all over the park. They’ve done the same as they’ve done for the last two years, come home with a late run. They’ve put themselves in prime positions for the minor premiership again. Obviously, we need to be on our game, they’ve got quality all over the park. [Kieran] Sanders is doing really well, [Daniel] McBreen up front, [Dylan] Holz has been doing really well for them. We need to be a lot better than what we have been.”

“You’ve got to take the positives, while we haven’t been playing great football, we are still getting results. We have only lost one game in 11 weeks, to the Jaffas which we were pretty unlucky when we hit the post four times, so we are still eking out results. It is a sign of a good side, win when you are not playing well.”

Damian Zane (Edgeworth)

“I’ve already said to the boys, to not listen to what is going around. Everyone is telling the crisis [Hamilton] are in. I look at the points table and it tells me a different story. On Tuesday I was pretty blunt with my message about how we go about this week and that it is not going to be easy. They always come out with a point to prove against us.”

“It’s going to be a tough match. It’s a massive game. If we stay ahead of the pack after this weekend away to a Hamilton, it is ours to lose that is for sure. We’ve lost both games [at Darling Street] in the league since I’ve been here. We are not a big physical team, and we thought it would be even harder this year. That’s the reason why we brought in Kieran [Sanders], for the games at Darling Street. He’s just got mongrel in him, he’s tough, he’s skilful.”

Key: Can Edgeworth win their first PS4 NPL match at Darling Street since 2011?

U20s Hamilton Olympic – Edgeworth Sunday 16th July kick off 12.30 pm Darling St Oval

U18s Hamilton Olympic – Edgeworth Sunday 16th July kick off 10.45 am Darling St Oval


U13s Olympic vs Charlestown Saturday 15th  July kick off 10.00 am at Darling St Oval

U14s Olympic vs Charlestown Saturday 15th  July kick off 11.30 am at Darling St Oval

U15s Olympic vs Charlestown Saturday 15th  July kick off 1.00 pm at Darling St Oval

U16s Olympic vs Charlestown Saturday 15th  July kick off 2.30 pm at Darling St Oval


Valentine Phoenix v Maitland Magpies
2.30pm Saturday 15th July at Cahill Oval

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Maitland 0 Valentine 4 at Cooks Square Park.
Ladder: Valentine 3rd (31), Maitland 6th (24)
Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Valentine – Won Jets 3-2 (h), Lost Rosebud 2-4 (a), Won Jaffas 2-1 (h)

Maitland –  Won Bears 3-2 (a), Lost Eagles 1-2 (h), Drew Olympic 2-2 (a)

Bottom Line

Neither Valentine nor Maitland can afford to drop points this weekend as the race for the top four intensifies.

Maitland sit four points adrift of fourth-placed Hamilton and while defeat won’t end their finals hopes, it will make the task very difficult

The Magpies scraped past Weston last weekend in the ‘El Classicoal’ and while coach Phil Dando though his side were lucky to claim three points, he will be pleased they could still claim victory without playing at their full potential.

Valentine had last weekend off with the bye but met the Newcastle Jets Youth on Wednesday last week.

A 3-2 victory against the Jets kept them entrenched in the top four and provided a significant boost to their confidence after it received a battering in the second half of round 16 against Adamstown.

The Phoenix led 2-0 inside half-an-hour against the Rosebuds. Captain, Scott McGinley put a penalty over the bar before half-time and from there it all went downhill for Valentine. Four goals later and the Rosebuds had pulled off a remarkable 4-2 win.

Since Valentine’s promotion in 2016, the sides have met three times in the NPL. Maitland won the first – a fiery encounter – 3-2 at Cahill Oval and the Phoenix have won both since.

The sides have a lot of history, with Valentine and Maitland vying for promotion from the NewFM Northern League One in 2014, which Maitland ultimately won.

The Phoenix haven’t beaten Maitland at Cahill Oval since 2014, where they thumped them 4-0 – the same scoreline which they won by earlier this season.

This match cannot be split. Both sides have been up and down of late winning two of their last four. Whoever stands tall in the big moments will get the job done.

What the Coaches Said:

Darren Sills (Valentine)

“There is a little bit of rivalry forged between the clubs. I think that stems back from the NewFM days, so I’m looking forward to it. Across they park they have got some great players. I think Phil Dando has done a terrific job with the workload, whether or not that is catching up with them I don’t know. This is their Grand Final this weekend, they really need to perform and win. We are in the same boat, we really need to cement a top four position and we need to win this game.”

“Simple fact is, people say to you, you’ve had a great year, we haven’t done anything so it’s not a great year until we at least get to the semi-finals. Although our minor premiership aspirations are pretty well over it would be terrible to fall at the last hurdle and not make the semis, so we are really working hard to ensure that happens.”

Phil Dando (Maitland)

“We thought we matched them for a large part of the game and then it was during that busy period that we had, we just lost our way a bit in the second half. But, first half we were really matching them. We just ran out of legs a bit. We shouldn’t be that bad this time around. We are a bit more settled now, just playing at the weekend instead of two games a week, so we should be ready for it.”

“We have the perennial problem of course that every team we play against has the bye the week before they play us, so they’ll come into it fresh and we are still chipping away. But, they’re very quick and of course, with [Jalon] Brown up front. They use that pace, a bit like us really. They use that pace up front and if you are not defending well they will kill you off.” 

Key: Consistency. Both sides haven’t been that of late. Who can step up in a match that means plenty for both clubs?


Lambton Jaffas v Charlestown City Blues
2.30pm Saturday 15th July at Arthur Edden Oval

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Charlestown 1 Lambton 2 at Lisle Carr Oval.
Ladder: Lambton 2nd (32), Charlestown 8th (15)
Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Lambton – Lost Magic 1-3 (a), Won Roosters 3-1 (h), Lost Phoenix 1-2 (a)

Charlestown – Lost Olympic 1-2 (h), Lost Roosters 0-2 (a), Lost Magic 0-2 (a)

Bottom Line

Lambton will aim to respond from a defeat with a victory for the fifth time in all competitions in 2017 when they host a Charlestown side who have lost three on the spin but have given a good account of themselves in each defeat.

The Blues come into the fixture on the back of a defeat to Hamilton Olympic on Sunday afternoon, where like most sides recently against Hamilton, they had the lead going into the final 20 minutes before a late Olympic surge was enough to get them over the line.

Injuries to key players including skipper Matt Tull have cruelled the Blues over the back-half of the campaign, but to look on the bright side their young talent has stood tall over the last few weeks.

Meanwhile, Lambton have struggled over the last few weeks, winning just one of their last three matches to fall from the top spot on the ladder.

Last weekend they were outgunned by a dominant Broadmeadow Magic side 3-1 away from home, where they struggled to create chances against a strong Magic backline.

The loss of Jobe Wheelhouse seems to have been keenly felt by Lambton who have won two and lost two in the PS4 NPL NNSW since he was injured a month ago in the Westfield FFA Cup clash with Edgeworth.

To add to that, the Jaffas record of late against the Blues isn’t that flash, and while they won 2-1 in round seven, that is the only victory Lambton have had against Charlestown in their last three encounters.

With the experience and pedigree Lambton has, in comparison to a mainly younger and less experienced Charlestown side, the Jaffas will rightly be favourites to make it two from two against the Blues this season.

What the Coaches Said:

Shane Pryce (Charlestown)

“Tough time to get them. Beware of the wounded bear. They’ll be looking to get back on track and get back to winning ways. We are playing away from home, Lambton at home with the quality of player they have got with the expectation to win the whole thing, it’s a massive game for them and a game where we hopefully can turn up and show the same fight and passion that we did on the weekend.”

“The message for my guys with the changes at the club is go out and put yourself in the spotlight and the window so to speak for everyone to see. As long as you come off and you’ve had a go, well then you can hold your head up high. That was our attitude to the Olympic game and it’s going to be the same this weekend as well. [We’ve got] nothing to lose.”

Key: Can Lambton respond from defeat with a win for the fifth time this year?


Newcastle Jets Youth v Weston Bears
2.30pm Saturday 15th July at Rockwell Automation Park

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Weston 2 Jets Youth 2 at Rockwell Automation Park.
Ladder: Jets Youth 10th (9), Weston 11th (7)
Past 3 Starts (most recent first):
Jets – Lost Eagles 1-4 (a), Lost Phoenix 2-3 (a), Lost Olympic 1-2 (h)

Weston – Lost Magpies 2-3 (h), Lost Rosebud 0-2 (h), Lost Jaffas 0-5 (a)

Bottom Line

Both Weston and the Jets Youth will be in need of some confidence in the PS4 NPL NNSW with both sides winless run in their last 11 matches combined.

The Bears have lost their last six straight, while the Jets Youth have lost their last five matches.

Weston were unlucky on Saturday in the Coalfields Derby, going down 3-2 in a tight encounter where they deserved at least a point.

Midweek, they took on the Newcastle Jets Hyundai A-League side and went down 2-0 in a match where the Bears gave a great account of themselves, scrambling in defence to deny the Jets on numerous occasions, while also creating a couple of chances for themselves.

The Jets Youth play their third match of a four in a frantic two-week period when they clash with the Bears on Saturday. They will play Lake Macquarie on Tuesday before flying out to China where they will participate in the prestigious Weifang Cup.

The Jets will no doubt be keen to head to China on a positive note after a season to forget where they have won just twice in 16 matches.

The young Jets have had the wood over the Bears recently with Weston winning only one of the last five matches between the sides.

Earlier this season, Chris Hurley scored a double for the Bears – of which his first was a goal of the year contender.

Hurley’s second put Weston in front in the 90th minute, but they couldn’t hold on as Mark Moric scored in the third minute of stoppage time to ensure the points would be shared.

Expect another close encounter on Saturday, but the buzz about the Weston playing group after playing the Jets on Tuesday may just be enough to give them the edge.

What the Coaches Said:

Labinot Haliti (Jets Youth Assistant)

“[Weston] are a good team, they did well [on Wednesday night]. Obviously, coming up against the Newcastle Jets A-League team it was always going to be a test for them. But, I thought it was a good game overall. The young boy Patty [Pat Langlois] played the full game, and Leroy [Jennings] in the middle he came on with about 30 to go so he got a bit of game time. Slowly, slowly everything is coming good.”

“It’s good that there are boys from the Youth coming up and they get a bit of a chance to show themselves. But, they are only young boys so they are going to have plenty of ups and downs, as it’s a football career and that is part of it. The last two games, especially against Valentine was good, and against Edgeworth, one of the best teams in the comp, maybe not so good in the second half. But, I think the most important thing is if they are learning and improving game to game.”

Steve Piggott (Weston)

“It was an exciting experience for those young players, for me. I still live for those moments when you come up against quality coaches and you put your brains together and see if you can plan around the quality that they have got. We probably could have done a little better, but you are limited by what you have got in a team. I was happy with my performance and I was happy with their performance.”

“It’s always tough when you have a midweek match. Can you replicate what you did? If we can replicate the intensity and the willingness to do the things we did really well [on Tuesday], this weekend against the Jets Youth we should win the match. For me the Jets Youth are similar to us, a young side, lacking confidence at times. Can either group get over their deficiencies and put it into practice to win the game?”

Key: With two young sides on show, can a player on either side step up and take the game by the scruff of the neck?


Broadmeadow Magic v Adamstown Rosebud
2.30pm Sunday 16th July at Magic Park

Last Meeting: Round 7, 2017: Adamstown 0 Broadmeadow 0 at Adamstown Oval.
Ladder: Broadmeadow 5th (27), Adamstown 9th (13)
Last 3 Starts (most recent first):
Broadmeadow – Won Jaffas 3-1 (h), Won Blues 2-0 (h), Won Phoenix 3-1 (a)

Adamstown – Lost Roosters 1-3 (a), Won Phoenix 4-2 (h), Won Bears 3-0 (a)

Bottom Line

Adamstown faces one of the most daunting prospects in the PS4 NPL NNSW at the moment – a dual with a Magic side who have won seven straight and only seem to be getting better.

Last weekend Broadmeadow knocked over the league-leading Lambton Jaffas 3-1, in one of their most impressive performances of the season and coach Ruben Zadkovich spoke after the match about how keen his men are to right the wrongs of the first 11 rounds.

One of their most disappointing performances of the first round of matches was the clash at Adamstown Oval on ANZAC Day against the Rosebud’s where Magic simply couldn’t break down a stout Adamstown defence.

Zadkovich and his men will be keen to erase that result from their memories with a quality showing in front of their home fans against the Rosebuds.

Adamstown coach Nick Webb returns to Magic where he started the season as Assistant Coach before taking a break and then moving to Adamstown last month.

Webb has turned results and morale around for the Rosebud’s, as they have won two of their last three matches and climbed off the bottom of the ladder in the process.

The only issue for Webb has been Adamstown’s first half performances. Since he has arrived they have conceded nine of their 11 goals in the first half of matches and he will have to rectify that against a Magic side who can’t stop scoring at the moment.

In second halves they have been unstoppable, scoring six goals in the second half of their last three matches, so it really is a balancing act for Webb and his side.

Magic roar into this match as favourites. But, as Adamstown showed in round seven – underestimate them at your peril.

What the Coaches Said:

Ruben Zadkovich (Broadmeadow)

“Tough game. They are a good side, for some workers. They’ve got working class players so they’ll be industrious, so we’ll have to compete and match them physically and mentally before the game even starts to be honest. Then if we turn up with the right attitude, our quality should get us across the line with the way we are playing at the moment.”

“The first round was frustrating, we still dominated, don’t get me wrong, we absolutely dominated the game. Their keeper made a few good saves and we should have taken chances, but we didn’t. In the end, they had all 11 players all camped back in their half, hanging on for a point when they were coming last. The whole game was frustrating for me, and I’m prepared that they might do something similar again. I’m hoping that they actually have a go so we can actually put on a decent show, and decent football like we have in recent weeks.”

Nick Webb (Adamstown)

“’You’ve got to stop the outlets that is allowing the balls into [James] Virgili and Kale [Bradbury] and these guys. Obviously, shutting down [Mitch] Oxborrow and his balls in behind like he has been playing. He is the key to our game plan and we’ll be working on that, but at the end of the day we’ve got to be confident enough in ourselves to go out and win the game as well.”

“We are not going to sit back and hope we can defend. That is just not how I coach. We just need to take our opportunities that are in front of us and that is obviously what has been killing us. We still are leaking way too many goals but certainly, we are not scoring enough.”

Key: Can Adamstown solve their first half woes, without comprising their second half performances?


Hamilton Olympic come away with 3 points from Charlestown City Blues

Hamilton Olympic 2 (Goodchild (p) 73’, Cooper 80’) defeat Charlestown City Blues 1 (Ferguson 17’) 

Hamilton are quickly making a name for themselves as the PlayStation®4 NPL Northern NSW’s comeback kings, as for the third week in a row Olympic fought back from a deficit in the second half.

Goals from Charlestown-bound forward Kane Goodchild and speedster Rhys Cooper in the final 20 minutes ensured the three points would head home with the men from Hamilton. 

It was the Blues though who shot out of the blocks. Rene Ferguson opened the scoring for Charlestown in the 16th minute with a contender for ‘Goal of the Season’.

After the ball came off pin-balled off heads following a Blues goal-kick, it fell to Ferguson who from about 35 metres out launched a looping long-range strike which dipped over Tyler Warren in the Olympic goal to make it 1-0.

It was a stunning way to get the scoring started for the home side who took their slim advantage into the sheds at half-time.

When they returned, the Blues continued to hold Olympic at bay. That was until Dan Bartlett clipped Andrew Swan in the box in the 72nd minute and referee James Cleal pointed to the spot.

Kane Goodchild – who will play at Charlestown next season – stepped up and dispatched the spot-kick to the delight of the visiting fans.

A little over five minutes later, and the competitions ‘Comeback Kings’ had hit the front. Goodchild played in Rhys Cooper – amid cries of offside – down the middle of the park.

Cooper sprinted onto the pass, prodding it past the onrushing Nathan Archbold to make it 2-1 and ensure Hamilton would keep their spot in the competition’s top four.

Under 20s Olympic won 7-1
Under 18s Charlestown won 2-3

NPL Youth
Olympic vs Lake Macquarie
Under 16s Olympic won 1-0
Under 15s Lakes won 1-2
Under 14s drew 2-2
Under 13s Olympic won 11-0

Zone League 2
Olympic vs Nelson Bay
1st Grade Nelson Bay won 1-2
2nd Grade Olympic won 3-0


Broadmeadow Magic 3 (Virgili 33’, Bradbury 59’, 74’), Lambton Jaffas 1 (Hay 85’) at Magic Park.

Broadmeadow Magic recorded their seventh victory in succession with a dominant 3-1 victory over Lambton in the ‘Match of the Round’.

The victory keeps Magic in fifth – just a point outside the top four.

After an arm-wrestle over the opening half-hour Magic got their noses in front and didn’t look back when James Virgili opened the scoring. Mitch Oxborrow launched a long ball from deep inside his own half which the Magic flyer latched onto.

Lambton skipper Michael Sessions misjudged the swirling long ball as he ran backwards and Virgili sped through and finished superbly to make it 1-0 in the 33rd minute.

James Virgili turned from scorer to provider in the 59th minute when he teed up Kale Bradbury. Virgili darted along the by-line and squared for Bradbury who smashed home his sixth goal of the season to make it 2-0.

Oxborrow’s masterclass continued when he found Dino Fajkovic with a long pass in the 74th minute.

Fajkovic fired a shot from the right side of the box which was well saved by Swancott, but Kale Bradbury was on hand at the back post to control the ball as it rolled towards the by-line, step away from Ridge Marpu, and thump home his second goal of the match.

Jaffas keeper Brad Swancott received a yellow card in the aftermath of the goal after questioning the decision of referee Stephen Laurie.

Replays showed the ball appeared the cross the by-line as Bradbury attempted to take control of the ball. But, it took nothing away from a clinical Broadmeadow performance.

Ben Hay scored a late consolation for Lambton in the 85th minute after Pat Brown found space down the right edge, and Magic couldn’t clear the danger.

But, it did little to take the gloss of Broadmeadow’s day though as they retained the Elders Charity Shield.

Magic coach Ruben Zadkovich says finally the luck is falling his side’s way.

“Now little things are going our way, little calls are going our way, offsides are going our way, things off the keeper are falling to us.

“We had zero luck for about six weeks there and it was a really tough struggle to keep players believing in what we are doing because results dictate your confidence. I’m a resolute person and we are slowly turning into a pretty resolute bunch.

“Now they are getting their belief and their rewards they are more than confident before games start that they are going to go out and get what they deserve.

“That is all they needed. That is the biggest difference between where we were and where we are now.”

Jaffas coach James Pascoe felt too many mistakes hurt his side in the wash-up.

“If you commit that many unforced errors in the game, you give the other team the ascendency.

“We didn’t execute the game plan as we would have liked. That happens at times and you’ve got to be able to adjust.

“[Magic] were terrific at the back. The Griffiths boys didn’t get any spare change out of them at all. Jonny Griffiths and Piddo [Josh Piddington] were immense.

“At the end of the day, I think the score is about right for the game.”


Maitland Magpies 3 (Dutton-Black 18’, 82’ Clarke 41’), Weston Bears 2 (Barner 16’, Buswell 67’) at Rockwell Automation Park. 

‘We were lucky to get away it.’

Those were the thoughts of Maitland coach Phil Dando after the Magpies left it late to claim a 3-2 victory over last-placed Weston on Saturday.

In the third Coalfields Derby of the season, Maitland scraped through with a one-goal win for the third time.

And while it wasn’t the Magpies’ best performance, three points were all they needed as they kept within touching distance of the top four.

Early on, it seemed an upset was brewing when Weston opened the scoring after just 16 minutes.

Sam Ford chipped a pass over the top of the Magpies backline and keeper Matt Trott misjudged the bouncing ball. Barner was able to control the ball, round Trott, and slot the ball into an open net for just his second goal of the season.

However, Weston’s lead was short lived. Just two minutes later Josh Dutton-Black curled in a corner which somehow snuck inside Kane Runge’s near post and the Magpies were back level.

Maitland continued to control the match for the remainder of the opening half and Ryan Clarke ensured the Magpies would head to the break with the lead. After a mazy run down the left side, the speedy striker cut infield and unleashed from the edge of the box.

The shot was too powerful for Runge and found its way inside the near post.

The Magpies took their 2-1 lead into half-time and when they returned they struggled to continue their opening half dominance as Weston got a foothold in the contest.

Cooper Buswell prodded home a corner in the 67th minute, to make it 2-2, and the Bears seemed to grow in confidence. It looked as though they could go on and win the match.

But, Weston fell asleep at the back in the 82nd minute. Matt Comerford sped down the left and weaved infield before finding Dutton-Black in the middle of the box.

The winger turned, spun, and fired and powerful shot from close range which Runge could only parry into his net.

The great escape seemed to have been completed by the Magpies, however, Chris Hurley gave them one final scare. A Weston corner was not cleared by Maitland and fell to Hurley on the edge of the box, who controlled and volleyed with his left boot.

The ball flew towards goal and just didn’t dip enough as it sailed just over the bar.

Maitland survived after a tough Coalfield derby, recording their fifth win in a row against the Bears.

“I’ve been banging on all season about when we play at our best we are a match for anyone in the competition. Today we were nowhere near our best,” Dando said post-match.

“We really did make it hard for ourselves. We started poorly again and we talked at half-time about upping the tempo and the ball speed being a bit quicker and we got none of it. We actually went backwards, second half,” he added.

Despite his disappointment, Dando was pleased with his side’s desire.

“One thing we did is that we were desperate in the end. We needed the points and we hung tight, at least without playing well, we hung tight and we got something out of it.”

Bears coach Steve Piggott felt focus in the vital parts of the match hurt his side again.

“We get in the game and we even it up and we even it up and then a lack of concentration again. They get a foothold again and then you are chasing the game.

“It’s too hard to chase the game against an experienced side with young players. It’s too hard. The expectation just gets too much.”

“Sometimes when we analyse a game. The key moments hurt us because we hurt ourselves and the good teams don’t. They get away with it.

“I don’t call it luck, I just call it experience it. It’s the edge in the key moments. This year we’ve been guilty of stuffing up key moments or losing the key moments.”


Edgeworth Eagles 4 (Brice 6’, Sanders 14’, McBreen 53’, Taylor 75’) defeated Newcastle Jets Youth 1 (Frendo 15’) at Jack McLaughlan Oval.

Edgeworth returned to the top of the table with a comprehensive 4-1 victory over the Newcastle Jets Youth.

It didn’t take the Eagles long to open the scoring – just six minutes – after Bren Hammel whipped in a corner for Ayden Brice to powerfully head into the back of the net.

Edgeworth made it 2-0 just eight minutes later when Kieran Sanders played a wonderful one-two with Will Bower.

The Englishman sprinted down the left side of the box and finished with precision, curling his right foot shot home to double the advantage.

But, the Jets Youth were quick to reply after Edgeworth failed to deal with a corner and Jackson Frendo struck his shot sweetly from the edge of the box which nestled in the bottom right corner. After a frantic opening 15 minutes, the Eagles led 2-1.

It took almost 40 minutes for another goal in the match. It came in the 53rd minute when Will Bower put his free kick on a dime for Daniel McBreen to head home at the back post and double the lead.

Brody Taylor sealed the match in the 75th minute for Edgeworth when he tapped home at the back post, following a near-post flick-on from McBreen.

The win was Edgeworth’s third in a row in the PS4 NPL NNSW and their fifth in all competitions as they continued their strong run of form.

Eagles coach Damian Zane said his side “played quite well”.

“Second half we just said go out and do the job, finish it,” Zane said.

“They might have had one shot in the second half and realistically we could have scored a couple more goals.”

“When we got the news in from Broadmeadow that was good too.”

Jets Youth coach Lawrie McKinna felt his side “were in a bit flat from Wednesday night.”

“It’s just disappointing we lost three goals from three set-pieces. That was poor.

“The boys let one in, in the first couple minutes and then one in a couple of minutes after half-time so that was disappointing.

“We felt we dropped off a bit in the second half and that was where Wednesday’s game came in.”


Lake Macquarie Roosters 3 (Walker 11’, Sparre 27’ defeated Adamstown Rosebud 1 (Niyonkuru 87’) at Macquarie Field. 

There were no second-half heroics for Adamstown this weekend after they conceded three first-half goals at Macquarie Field on Sunday.

The Rosebud’s left themselves with too much work to do in the second stanza as the Roosters kept their faint finals hopes flickering with a superb first half performance.

Sam Walker ensured he kept pace with Jalon Brown at the top of the Golden Boot count when he pinched the ball just inside the Rosebuds half after Alex Read and Owen Littlewood got in each other’s way.

Walker sprinted down field and went one-on-one with Rosebuds keeper Riley Hill before calmly slotting across Hill to make it 1-0.

Tom Sparre scored his first goal of the season for the Roosters in the 27th minute when Adamstown couldn’t clear a Lake Macquarie corner. The ball sat up for Sparre on the edge of the box and he hit it sweetly, low and hard into the bottom left corner.

Trent Partridge made it an ever better first 45 minutes for Lakes when he curled a shot inside the top right corner following some sparkling build-up play from the Roosters.

Partridge’s post-goal celebration was one of the more interesting of the season, with Lakes clearly enjoying their start to the match.

Adamstown created enough changes in the back-end of the first half and into the second, but they were unable to take them as they did a week earlier.

Aaron Niyonkuru added a late bright spot on an otherwise disappointing afternoon for Adamstown when he danced past defenders and finished in the 87th minute.

But, it was all too-little-too-late for the Rosebuds as they went down 3-1.

Rosebuds coach Nick Webb felt his side weren’t good enough from the outset.

“We were very poor in the first 35-40 minutes. We knew exactly what they were going to do and they did exactly what we said they would do.

“We handed them the first goal and pretty well handed them the second goal, to be honest.”

But, Webb said they weren’t without their chances.

“We had our own opportunities towards the end of that first half. We should have at least had one, maybe two if not more.

“Second half I think they got in our half twice. We just didn’t quite have the comeback of last weekend. We can’t expect to turn up for 60 minutes and win a game. It just doesn’t happen.”

Roosters coach Anthony Richards was pleased with the result but wasn’t totally happy with the performance.

“It was a good first half from us and then it sort of slowed down a little bit. We sort of went into a bit of a defensive mode.

“Unfortunately, we weren’t able to go on with it [in the second half]. I guess we just did enough to get over the line.

“We were looking for three points, that was out focus today and we were good enough to get it.”


PS4 NPL NNSW Round 17:Hamilton Olympic travel away to Charlestown City

Charlestown City Blues v Hamilton Olympic

2.30pm Sunday 9th July at Lisle Carr Oval

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Hamilton 1 Charlestown 2 at Darling Street Oval.

Ladder: Charlestown 8th (15), Hamilton 4th (25)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Charlestown – Lost Roosters 0-2 (a), Lost Magic 0-2 (a), Won Jets 4-0 (h)

Hamilton – Won Jets 2-1 (a), Drew Magpies 2-2 (h), Won Rosebud 3-0 (h)

Bottom Line

Hamilton teetered on the brink of defeat last weekend against the Jets Youth and will want to hope their “worst performance of the season” according to coach Mick Bolch is well and truly behind them.

Andrew Swan and Rhys Cooper were the saviours for Olympic last weekend as each scored in the final 15 minutes to spare Hamilton’s blushes and keep them in pole position for a finals berth.

While Olympic’s form has been patchy of late, they have only lost one of their last 10 PS4 NPL matches since the defeat to Charlestown in round six. With new signing Reece Papas getting some time to gel with the team on the weekend and at training he will only be better for the run.

Charlestown were always going to be up against it at Magic Park last weekend against a Broadmeadow side who have looked unstoppable of late.

But, the Blues rolled up their sleeves and put in a strong performance. Rene Ferguson caused problems aplenty for the Magic defence, while goalkeeper Nathan Archbold – recruited Broadmeadow – made some brilliant saves to keeper them in the game.

Midweek the Blues went down in another tight contest – 2-0 to the Roosters to leave them in 8th place with five matches left to play.

A win for Olympic and they could consolidate the fourth spot on the ladder, however, defeat could drop them out of the four.

The margins are so very tight at this time of the season and Hamilton will be favourites to continue their march towards a finals spot.

What the Coaches Said:

Shane Pryce (Charlestown)

“I guess, there is a comparison between the predicaments at both clubs. Bolchy and I are moving on at the end of the year, one to another job and I’m not going anywhere yet. It’s pretty hard on both sides on the coin to walk into a dressing room and demand and expect the best from your players because of the situation we are in.”

“I really think this is anyone’s game. We’ve got a home game and I did mention before that the response from my guys against Maitland a few games ago was brilliant. I think it’s up for grabs for anyone to be honest. I don’t want us to roll over, we’ve still got jobs to do and the boys still have contracts to play for and win bonuses. The players have been brilliant.”

Mick Bolch (Hamilton)

“[Charlestown] haven’t been travelling brilliantly the last few weeks, but I’m sure they’ll be up. There always up playing Olympic and a few of their old boys. They’re a different side with Josh Maguire playing. He gives them that little bit of leadership and ex-factor in the front third.”

“There are a lot of distractions at the moment and as a group, we just need to focus on football and the job at hand again. [The distractions] have probably been spoken about too much, to be honest. It’s always going to be there. The paper again this week, you had Grant Brown signing for Charlestown. The players and myself both have a job to do for Hamilton Olympic for the rest of the year and that has got to be our number one priority every time we take the field.”

Key: With both coaches leaving at the season’s end, which team can put their off-field distractions to the side?

U20s Hamilton Olympic – Charlestown Sunday 9th July kick off 12.30 pm Lisle Carr Oval

U18s Hamilton Olympic – Charlestown Sunday 9th July kick off 10.45 am Lisle Carr Oval


U13s Olympic vs Lake Macquarie Sunday 9th  July kick off 10.00 am at Darling St Oval

U14s Olympic vs Lake Macquarie Sunday 9th  July kick off 11.30 am at Darling St Oval

U15s Olympic vs Lake Macquarie Sunday 9th  July kick off 1.00 pm at Darling St Oval

U16s Olympic vs Lake Macquarie Sunday 9th  July kick off 2.30 pm at Darling St Oval


Broadmeadow Magic v Lambton Jaffas

2.30pm Sunday 9th July at Magic Park

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Lambton 1 Broadmeadow 1 at Arthur Edden Oval.

Ladder: Broadmeadow 5th (24pts), Lambton 1st (32)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):

Broadmeadow – Won Blues 2-0 (h), Won Phoenix 3-1 (a), Won Bears 4-1 (a)

Lambton – Won Roosters 3-1 (h), Lost Phoenix 1-2 (a), Won Bears 5-0 (h)

Bottom Line

Broadmeadow Magic will look to win their seventh consecutive match in all competitions when they host Lambton in this weekend’s ‘Match of the Round’.

Magic have proved an unstoppable force of late and while they have piled on the goals – 19 in their last six matches – defensively they have been rock solid as well, conceding just three times during the same period.

Last weekend they recorded a comfortable 2-0 victory over Charlestown which coach Ruben Zadkovich thought could have been more. Magic’s all round domination of sides recently sets up a mouth-watering contest against the league leaders.

To put their recent form in context, the closest any side has got to Broadmeadow over their last six matches is two goals – in a 3-1 win over Valentine and last weekend against the Blues.

Their opponents Lambton who boast one of the premier squads in the competition, won’t be overawed by Broadmeadow’s recent form. They will feel they have the talent and temperament to end Magic’s winning run.

After an upset loss to Valentine in round 15 the Jaffas returned to form on the weekend against Lake Macquarie, meaning Lambton have responded with a win on every occasion this season, where the week before they suffered defeat.

Earlier in the season, the two sides met in a cracking twilight contest on Good Friday where they were unable to be separated after both received and penalty and converted it during the second half.

With both sides boasting strong rosters, Magic’s recent form and home ground advantage means they will enter as slight favourites on Sunday. But, everything points to an almightily close contest.

What the Coaches Said:

James Pascoe (Lambton)

“Good venue, two good sides. I think all the ingredients are there for it to be an absolute ripper so we’re well and truly looking forward to this one. It’ll be great.”

“I think obviously, [Broadmeadow] have stopped conceding silly goals I suppose if I can put it that way. I thought the first game that we played against them for probably an hour in that match, they played the best football that we have come up against all year. They’ve had a bit of horror run at home for a while where they have conceded a hell of a lot of goals. They’ve stopped conceding and that has been a big part of [their strong form].”

Key: Broadmeadow’s defence has been rock solid over their previous six wins. Can they keep it watertight against the best attacking side in the competition?

Weston Bears v Maitland Magpies

2.30pm Saturday 8th July at Rockwell Automation Park

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Maitland 1 Weston 0 at Cooks Square Park.

Ladder: Weston 11th (7), Maitland 6th (21)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Weston – Lost Rosebud 0-2 (h), Lost Jaffas 0-5 (a), Lost Magic 1-4 (h)

Maitland –  Lost Eagles 1-2 (h), Drew Olympic 2-2 (a) Won Jets 6-1 (h)

Bottom Line

Weston and Maitland will meet in their third “El Classicoal” of the season at Rockwell Automation Park on Sunday, with the Bears aiming to break a five-match winless run against the Magpies.

Since the Magpies were promoted to the PlayStation®4 NPL NNSW in 2015, the sides have met five times, with Weston winning the first derby. Since then, Maitland have won three PS4 NPL fixtures, drawn one and defeated the Bears 3-2 in the first Westfield FFA Cup meeting between the sides earlier in 2017.

Maitland come into the game stinging after a heart-stopping 2-1 home defeat to Edgeworth. Will Bower – who was born and bred in Maitland – scored in the last-minute condemning the Magpies to their 20th consecutive top grade match with a victory against the Eagles.

The defeat also had a significant impact on the Magpies finals hopes. They now sit four points off a top four spot and it is paramount they win this weekend.

Weston just haven’t been able to get themselves going again after their round 10 victory over Charlestown. Since that afternoon, the Bears have lost five games straight and have conceded 15 goals in their last five encounters.

The young Bears are down on confidence and are in desperate need of a boost. A derby battle at home against their local rivals may just give them the lift they need.

While defensively Weston have been poor, in attack they have managed just two goals in their last five matches and haven’t scored in nearly three-and-a-half hours of football.

With no relegation, there is little pressure on Weston and plenty on Maitland. The Magpies are raging hot favourites, but how they respond after a gut-retching defeat last weekend will be the real test.

What the Coaches Said:

Steve Piggott (Weston)

“There are no surprises, it’s just who performs on the day. We’ve had a couple of tight matches against [Maitland]. They’re physically stronger than us. There is no doubt about that. If they put their best eleven out they are favourites every day. Physically we’ll get pushed off the ball a bit. In the last couple of matches against them, we’ve probably made some mistakes at the back playing out that they have punished us for.”

“Hopefully we can get it right most of the time, this time and maybe not give them a gift or two and won’t have to fight back with two late goals. We’ve looked at the games we’ve played against them, we know what we’ve got to do, it’s just about doing it for 90 minutes for us.”

Phil Dando (Maitland)

“There’s no easy games in the competition. Derby games have that little special edge as well, so they’ll be up for it. We are depleted with our some of our squad being away so we’ve just got to make sure we’ve got our best 11 on the park and just go and do the business.”

“We said all season, in the short competition that we have, only 20 games, you don’t want to lose any or you want to lose the bare minimum. We’ve lost five and we don’t really want to lose any more or then it will make it tough for us. We’ve just got to go out there and do the business and see what other results happen. But, we’ve got to do the business ourselves. If we don’t do it ourselves well, we won’t get what we want.”

Key: Maitland have conceded four goals in the last 15 minutes of matches, in their past three games. Can the young Bears keep in the contest early and strike late?


Edgeworth Eagles v Newcastle Jets Youth

2.30pm Sunday 9th July at Jack McLaughlan Oval

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Edgeworth 1 Jets Youth 0 at Jack McLaughlan Oval.

Ladder: Edgeworth 3rd (30), Jets Youth 10th (9)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Edgeworth – Won Magpies 2-1 (a), Won Rosebud 3-0 (a), Lost Jaffas 0-2 (h)

Jets – Lost Phoenix (a), Lost Olympic 1-2 (h), Lost Blues 0-4 (a)

Bottom Line

The Jets Youth will look to build on improved performances against Hamilton and Valentine during the week when they take on the defending premiers at Jack McLaughlan Oval on Sunday afternoon.

The Jets performance against Hamilton was their best in three weeks after successive heavy defeats against Maitland and Charlestown and you would expect they will be up for a clash with Edgeworth.

Mark Moric starred for the Jets on Saturday scoring his third goal of the season and causing problems all afternoon for the Hamilton defence.

He then backed up Saturday’s showing with a brace against Valentine midweek and with Kristian Brymora’s departure from the club, expect Moric to continue to play a significant role for the Jets in their final five matches.

Their opponents Edgeworth have continued to plug away, winning their fourth match in a row on Sunday against Maitland in dramatic fashion.

Youngster Will Bower struck in stoppage time to ensure the Eagles would take all three points. The win was a crucial one for Edgeworth who sit in third, just two points off top spot with a game in hand on the competition leading Jaffas.

Recent history has shown that the Jets Youth put in strong performances against the Eagles, with their last four matches being tight encounters.

Last season Edgeworth won both matches 4-2 against the Jets, but in the corresponding fixture, last season the Jets lead 2-1 with ten minutes to go only to go down 4-2. Earlier this season, the Eagles edged out the Jets 1-0.

With the premiership race, incredibly tight Edgeworth need to win this one and are raging hot favourites to do so.

What the Coaches Said:

Damian Zane (Edgeworth)

“I think Lawrie might be in charge this week, so you’d imagine they are going to come out fired up if you are playing in front of the CEO. They were all over Hamilton [last weekend] the bits I’ve seen. Bolchy [Olympic coach Mick Bolch] said they were flat so it’s hard to tell whether there are problems at Olympic or did the Jets play well?”

“The teams that went through the emotion of the cup, I bet you they didn’t do that well [last weekend]. I know the Gold Coast they’re leading their comp and they lost. South Melbourne lost. I said to someone, it’s just human nature. The players are distracted. You can talk about what you want. The draw was on Thursday and every one of those players were glued to their phone or TV watching the draw and then talking about South Melbourne instead of Maitland. For us, that [win last weekend] is probably the biggest three points of the year.

Key: Can Edgeworth put their Westfield FFA Cup distractions aside against the Jets?


Lake Macquarie City Roosters v Adamstown Rosebud

2.30pm Sunday 9th July at Macquarie Field

Last Meeting: Round 6, 2017: Adamstown 1 Lake Macquarie 2 at Adamstown Oval.

Ladder: Lakes 7th (19), Adamstown 9th (13)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):

Lakes – Won Blues 2-0 (h), Lost Jaffas 1-3 (a), Lost Magic 0-3 (h)

Adamstown – Won Phoenix 4-2 (h), Won Bears 3-0 (a), Lost Eagles 0-3 (h)

Bottom Line

The Rosebud’s have roared back to life in the last two weeks and will shoot for a third consecutive victory – an achievement not matched since 2015 – when they travel to Lake Macquarie on Sunday afternoon.

It really will depend on which Rosebud outfit turns up on Sunday. Will it be the one which was so disappointing in the first half last weekend against Valentine or the side that turned it on to score four goals in the final half-an-hour of the same match?

The win against the Phoenix was the first-time Adamstown have recorded consecutive victories since 2015.

Lake Macquarie have seemed to have lost traction of late after they slumped to their third consecutive loss on the weekend against Lambton. But, a midweek victory over Charlestown was just what the doctored ordered for the Roosters.

A goal from Sam Walker on Wednesday night ensured he sits just one goal off top spot in the Golden Boot standings, and if he can inspire Lakes to a victory on Sunday, finals may not be out of the question.

The last time these two sides met, it was a tight encounter with Lakes coming away with a 2-1 victory – their first against Adamstown since 2010.

Roosters midfielder Blake Green starred that day and his impact on matches cannot be underestimated. Green has scored five goals in 2017 and when he has found the back of the net Lakes have not lost.

With all the momentum and form in their favour, Adamstown will head to Macquarie Field as favourites, although expect a tight encounter.

What the Coaches Said:

Anthony Richards (Lake Macquarie)

“I don’t think it’s been a disappointing run of form, but a disappointing run of results. We weren’t playing too bad along the way. I thought we did quite well against Jaffas on the weekend. It was only their little bit of quality that beat us and against the Magic again it was only a couple of little lapses that hurt us. But, overall I wasn’t too concerned with how we went. But, it was good to get the points [against Charlestown].”

“[Adamstown] are going really well. Any side that changes their coach quite often become dangerous. They’ve got the evergreen Stu Musialik in there pulling the strings and Alex Read whether he is a centre back or striker he is a good player. In round one we were quite lucky to get the win that day. They played really well and we were just good enough to take our chances when they came.”

Nick Webb (Adamstown)

“[Lakes] are a quality side. They love playing on the counter and we’ve got to be very, very careful of not being short at the back to be quite honest. They created numerous chances [against Charlestown] and could have [scored] a lot more really.”

“We’ve just got to be better on the ball and we’ve just got to show a lot more commitment for the 90 minutes like we did in that last 45 [against Valentine]. We’ve got to come out and want to play and show some confidence. We’re not a bad side, we are certainly not a terrible side so we’ve just got to show that confidence and that desire to want the ball like we have at training.”

Key: Consistency. Can the Rosebud’s build of their second half performance against Valentine or was it a flash in the pan?


Hamilton Olympic defeat the Newcastle Jets Youth 2-1

Hamilton Olympic 2 (Cooper 75’, Swan 87’) defeated Newcastle Jets Youth 1 (Moric 43’) at Darling Street Oval. 

Hamilton Olympic produced another stirring second-half fightback against the Jets Youth, as they scored twice in the final 15 minutes to record an important 2-1 victory.

For the ninth time, this season Hamilton scored in the final 15 minutes, as they begin to develop a reputation as the competition’s comeback kings.

Mark Moric got the Jets off to a dream start, but goals from Andrew Swan and Rhys Cooper in the second half ensured the three points would stay at Darling Street.

The Jets worked the first goal beautifully as Cody Carroll found space down the left edge and hit a chipped pass centrally to Finn Parris who laid the ball off for Moric to drive the ball into the right corner from close range.

The Jets led 1-0 at the break and looked set to record an upset victory.

Enter Andrew Swan.

In his first match for Olympic, Reece Papas whipped in a free kick from 45 degrees on the left edge, and onto the head of Jets defender Kieran Hayes.

It ballooned high off Hayes towards goal and Andrew Swan was too strong in the air, rising above keeper Tristan Esquilant and nodding the ball over the line.

Just as it seemed the Jets Youth would quell the Olympic fightback, Kane Goodchild broke free down the middle of the park.

Charging down the ground, he curled a through ball across to the left, which judging by the groans of the Hamilton faithful, seemed too deep.

But, the experienced Swan ran the ball down just inside the line, darted infield, and squared the ball for Rhys Cooper who tapped home a first-time finish which brought the Olympic fans to their feet.

The comeback kings producing another stunning fightback to claim all three points and consolidate their spot within the four – for this weekend at least.

Olympic coach Mick Bolch wasn’t best pleased with his side describing it as “our worst performance of the season”.

“The old cliché is the sign of a good side is you can win when you are playing bad, but look we were poor. We didn’t string three passes together for the whole first half and we continually turned the ball over.”

Bolch said Andrew Swan’s injection off the bench was a match-turner.

“Andrew Swan probably changed the game. Within two minutes of him coming on, he scored the equaliser and set up the winner.

In contrast, Jets Youth coach Clayton Zane was very happy with his side’s performance saying they were “excellent from start to finish”.

“We dominated the game, we led 1-0. We should have led by more at half-time, we fluffed our lines a few times in front of goals.

“I was always a little bit worried with not taking chances against them. You know they’ve got a bit of steam in their front third when they start throwing things at you.”

Under 20s Olympic won 4-0
Under 18s Olympic won 3-1

NPL Youth
Olympic vs Maitland
Under 16s Olympic won 2-0
Under 15s Olympic won 3-0
Under 14s Olympic won 5-2
Under 13s Olympic won 4-0

Zone League 2
Olympic vs Hunter Simba
Washed out

NET results
Under 12s Olympic defeated Charlestown 2-0
Under 11s Olympic defeated by Adamstown 1-3

Olympic Junior Results
Under 16a Olympic defeated Maitland 6-1
Under 15a Olympic defeated Maitland 5-1
Under 13a Olympic defeated Sth Wallsend 6-1
Under 12b Olympic defeated Adamstown 2-1

Under 7/1 Olympic defeated New Lambton

Edgeworth Eagles 2 (Taylor 6’, Bower 90+2’) defeated Maitland Magpies 1 (Cansdell-Sheriff 12’) at Cooks Square Park. 

Edgeworth young gun Will Bower proved to be the hero for the Eagles as he scored a stoppage time goal to steal three points at Cooks Square Park on Sunday.

The ‘Match of the Round’ could not have been tighter with both Edgeworth and Maitland very evenly matched as they have proved already this season. But, in the moment that mattered, it was Bower who stood tall.

The Eagles flew into an early lead inside the opening ten minutes when Brody Taylor darted down the left edge of the box and finish astutely into the right corner.

Their lead didn’t last long though as the Magpies applied sustained pressure on the Eagles defence. Josh Dutton-Black curled in a free-kick from the left edge and the tall timber of Shane Cansdell-Sheriff nodded the ball on to lock up the scores.

Maitland were swift on the counter-attack and caused the Eagles defence plenty of headaches in the opening half. An injury to Matt Comerford midway through the opening half was a setback for the home side as they searched for the go-ahead goal.

Both sides continued to probe until half-time but neither could trouble the scoreboard as they headed to the sheds lock at one goal apiece.

When they returned, Ben Martin had a golden opportunity to put the Magpies ahead but his shot from close range was well blocked by goalkeeper Nate Cavaliere.

Keanu Moore came off the bench for Edgeworth in his first match back after a stint in Victoria and immediately looked sharp.

With one of his first touches, the speedy midfielder had a chance to nod the Eagles into the lead but headed straight at Magpies keeper Matt Trott.

Trott was brilliant in the second half, pulling off some tremendous saves as Edgeworth pushed hard. The final 15 minutes was all the Eagles as the Magpies seemed to fatigue and in the end, they couldn’t hold them out.

A Kieran Sanders corner was not dealt with by the Maitland defence and Bren Hammel nodded the ball on to Bower who scrambled the ball over the line among a sea of bodies.

There were appeals for offside from the Magpies players, but from replays, it seemed as though power was just onside.

Maitland were left to rue another late fade out, while the Eagles celebrated the fourth victory in a row.

Magpies coach Phil Dando felt his side were slow out of the blocks but was impressed with how they matched Edgeworth for large parts of the contest.

“I thought we were very, very sloppy to start with. But, then we got back into it very quickly and for much of the game, I thought we were on a par with them.

“They’re the yardstick and the best team in the comp and we matched them for large periods of the game.”

Dando said a hectic early season schedule was “certainly a large part of the reason” for his side’s late fadeouts in the last two matches.

The busy schedule ensured they couldn’t build their fitness base after they were “largely underdone” fitness-wise when he arrived.


Adamstown Rosebud 4 (Read 59’, Littlewood 77’, 84’, Tannock 88’) defeated Valentine Phoenix 2 (J. Brown 14’, 23’) at Adamstown Oval.

 Adamstown recorded one of the comebacks of the season as they fought back from a two-goal deficit at half-time to record a 4-2 victory over Valentine.

The Phoenix look set to sew up a finals spot after Jalon Brown struck twice in the opening 23 minutes, but the Rosebud’s came home like a steam train.

With the bye, next weekend, Valentine’s race for a top four spot just got a whole lot tighter.

The day began disastrously for the Rosebuds when Owen Littlewood played a weak back-pass to keeper Riley Hill in the 14th minute, which Phoenix striker Jalon Brown took full advantage of.

Hill reached the ball first, but it was too late as Brown blocked the clearance and tapped the ball into an empty net.

The afternoon got even worse less than ten minutes later for the home side as Alex Read stuck out an arm out to a Scott McGinley chipped pass.

The defender was rightly given a yellow card and Brown would make him feel even worse seconds later as he whipped a free kick inside the near post to make it 2-0.

Valentine had a chance to make it 3-0 in the 43rd minute when Scott McGinley was adjudged to have been fouled in the box by Jordan Harrison. Valentine’s skipper stepped up and blazed his penalty over the bar.

Less than 14 minutes into the second half and the Adamstown fightback began, as Alex Read made up for his earlier mistake.

Dayne Pawlik’s corner wasn’t punched clear of the box Phoenix keeper Perry Budden and Alex Read hit a strike with venom which powered into the back of the net to reduce the deficit to one.

Rosebuds continued to push on for an equaliser and they got their reward in the 77th minute.

Ryan Ensor curled in a corner from the right edge with was bundled home by Own Littlewood and the fightback was well and truly in full swing.

If Adamstown Oval had a roof on it in the 84th minute, it would have been blown off as Pawlik whipped in a free kick from 45 degrees on the right.

It looked as if it had too much power, but no one told Owen Littlewood that as he rose high to head the Rosebuds into the lead.

Justin Tannock put the icing on a memorable comeback in the 88th minute, after Aaron Niyonkuru headed on an Alex Read clearance.

Tannock was in a footrace with Josh Murray who stumbled and the tall striker took full toll, rounding Phoenix keeper Perry Budden and rolling home his second of the season.

To add further misery to the Phoenix’s afternoon, defender Zac Sneddon was given a second yellow card when he and Pawlik collided.

Pawlik looked to collect Sneddon who clutched at his ankle as he went to ground. The match was called off as he received medical attention and in his final match for Valentine this season he was handed a red card in what looked a strange decision.

Adamstown coach Nick Webb described the comeback as “awesome”.

“The club needed it, the players needed it just to show some real fight. For me, as a coach, it was a really good experience.

“They didn’t follow any game plan I put in the first half. Second half they went out and they completed everything they wanted to do and tore them to bits, to be honest.”

Webb said he talked to his side at half-time about the importance of putting on a quality second-half.

“I wanted them to show some life, show that the shirt means something to them. A few of the senior boys stood up and tore shreds of the other senior boys and that really led the way for the younger boys to realise this is not just a game, this is what it is all about.”

“I’ve nearly had all of them come up to me today and said, ‘I never felt anything like that today’ and it was just amazing.”

Valentine coach Darren Sills was clearly dejected post-match.

“We trained so well this week and really well. I thought we are on fire, we’re right. Then we came out and [Adamstown] didn’t touch the ball the first 20 minutes. Possession had to be up near 80 percent, it was just unbelievable.

“We got in the sheds. They were all buzzing and happy, confident. Then we go out there and fall asleep at a set piece again. It was just a terrible, terrible performance in the second half.

“We got into a dog fight with them and no one wanted to get in the fight with them.”


Lambton Jaffas 3 (J.Griffiths 24’, Verity 33’, R.Griffiths 53’) defeated Lake Macquarie City Roosters 1 (Walker 78’) at Arthur Edden Oval. 

Ryan Griffiths kept up his perfect scoring record in the PlayStation®4 NPL Northern NSW netting his fourth goal in as many matches as Lambton proved too strong for Lake Macquarie. 

His brother Joel got the ball rolling for Lambton when he opened the scoring for in the 24th minute when the Roosters struggled to clear the ball out of their penalty box.

Luke Remington controlled the miscued clearance on the edge of the ‘D’ and teed up Joel Griffiths on the right who powered home on the volley from close range.

Nathan Verity then headed the Jaffas into a two-goal lead in the 33rd minute, after Joel Griffiths curled in a pinpoint corner.

Lambton took a 2-0 lead into half-time and when they returned Ryan Griffiths made it four goals in as many PS4 NPL matches.

When the game resumed, Michael Kantarovski played a beautiful pass between the lines to Joel Griffiths, who squared to the top of the six-yard box. Lakes keeper Benn Kelly couldn’t claim the ball, and Ryan Griffiths cleaned up the scraps.

Sam Walker added a late consolation for the Roosters in the 78th minute when Lambton defender Liam O’Dell’s clearance could only find Tom Walker who headed a pass to his brother Sam who finished expertly.

It was a much needed three points for Lambton after a disappointing loss last weekend to Valentine. The Jaffas ensuring they will stay top of the table at the end of the weekend.

Lakes coach Anthony Richards conceded they were beaten by a better side.

“They were just too good in that top third, they took their chances when they came. We didn’t really help ourselves with injuries today. Brad York hurt his knee early, Dean Holt got caught at work in Dubbo and Tommy Smart had to come off early.

“Having said all that, the boys created some really good chances. But, they are a good side, they are well organised and they’ve got quality around the park.”


Broadmeadow Magic 2 (J. Virgili 24’, Oxborrow 80’) defeated Charlestown City Blues 0 at Magic Park. 

Broadmeadow Magic ensured their finals hopes are alive and kicking in a huge way as they secured a 2-0 victory over 8th placed Charlestown.

Goals from former Hyundai A-League players James Virgili and Mitch Oxborrow bookended the win for Broadmeadow, with a red card for defender Scott Robertson the only sour note.

Charlestown striker Rene Ferguson caused some early headaches for Magic’s defence, but it was James Virgili who opened the scoring for Broadmeadow in the 24th minute.

After some quality build up from Dino Fajkovic, Oxborrow chipped a pass to Virgili who darted down the right edge of the box and finished superbly past Nathan Archbold in the Blues goal.

Josh Piddington almost doubled the lead for Broadmeadow minutes later, but his header was brilliantly saved by Archbold.

Magic took a deserved 1-0 lead into the break and when they returned Nathan Archbold continued to thwart the home side. First, James Virgili found space down the right and Archbold pushed his cross away from danger.

Then, Dino Fajkovic couldn’t find a way past Archbold twice. Fajkovic weaved into the box and powered his shot towards goal. Archbold parried the initial strike back to the strong front man who headed another effort on goal which Archbold jumped to his feet to grab.

For the second time this season against the Blues, Magic were reduced to ten men when Scott Robertson was sent off after a receiving a second yellow card for what looked to be referee abuse.

Charlestown had a late chance to lock the match up with a goalmouth scramble, but couldn’t force the ball across the line.

Magic were good enough down a man to seal the three points when Oxborrow played a wonderful one-two with Kale Bradbury and finished expertly across Archbold from the left side of the box.

Broadmeadow ending the round in fifth place on the ladder, just a point outside the top four.

Magic coach Ruben Zadkovich was hugely impressed with his side’s showing.

“We thoroughly, thoroughly deserved to win. We pretty much battered them, to be honest. Chance after chance after chance after chance.

“Their coach has come out and said their keeper was their best player and he was by a long shot. Our football was very good, our attitude was very good and the boys are getting their rewards.”

Zadkovich said his side could have won by a lot more, if not for Archbold.

“To be honest, if the scoreline was 8-0, I think it would have been a fair result. Then again, that’s football you don’t expect them all to do in.

“So more realistic, it should have been five or six nil. I’m stoked we are creating all the chances and keeping a clean sheet as well.”


PS4 NPL NNSW Round 16:Hamilton Olympic take on the Newcastle Jets Youth

Newcastle Jets Youth v Hamilton Olympic
2.30pm Saturday 1st July at Darling Street Oval

Last Meeting: Round 5, 2017: Hamilton 4 Jets Youth 1 at Darling Street Oval.

Ladder: Jets Youth 10th (9), Hamilton 4th (22)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Hamilton – Drew Magpies 2-2 (h), Won Rosebud 3-0 (h), Lost Jaffas 2-3 (a)
Jets – Lost Blues 0-4 (a), Lost Magpies 1-6 (a), Won Rosebud 3-2 (a)

Bottom Line

After pulling three points out of the fire last weekend against Maitland, Hamilton knows that a win and nothing less is the requirement in what shapes as a fascinating finals race.

Olympic started strongly against Maitland, with Rhys Cooper the stand out as he cut swathes through the Magpies defence.

However, when a couple of chances went begging for Hamilton, Maitland made them pay and for an hour it seemed like the visitors would stroll to victory.

But, as Olympic have shown on countless occasions this season, they never say die. Scott Smith and Sean Pratt salvaged a point and almost three for their side.

This weekend provides a different challenge and a danger game for Hamilton, against a Jets Youth outfit who have leaked goals with monotonous regularity of late.

In their last two matches the Jets have conceded ten goals and with the likes of Pierce Clark and Cameron Joice missing for the Youth side on the weekend, it was always going to be a tough ask.

The final 15 minutes seems to be the key in this match. Hamilton have scored a league-high eight goals in the last 15 minutes of matches this season, while the Jets Youth have conceded a league-high 13 in the same period.

Olympic have won eight of the last ten between the sides and based on their form, they will be red hot favourites to make it nine of their last 11.

In intriguing news, Newcastle Jets CEO Lawrie McKinna will take over the coaching reigns at the Jets Youth for the foreseeable future. Labinot Haliti will be his assistant.

In a boost for Hamilton, former Jets Youth skipper Reece Papas has joined the club for the remainder of the season.

What the Coaches Said:

Mick Bolch (Hamilton)

“They are obviously a very young group, getting punished for mentally not switching on for 90 minutes. I’d say would be the best way to put it. I watched them against Maitland and that was sort of the case. They still play some good football and move the ball around well. They just switch off at times defensively.”

“It’s the same old same old with us, we’ve got to take our chances. After the result last weekend, every game is a grand final for us now. Complacency just can’t come into whatsoever. It really to me is not something I need to stress. The boys all know after the weekend Magic is one point behind us and Maitland is right behind us. Every game is vital for us now.” 

Key: Under new coach Lawrie McKinna, can the Jets Youth turn around their recent form?

U20s Hamilton Olympic – Jets Saturday 1st July kick off 12.30 pm Darling St Oval

U18s Hamilton Olympic – Jets Saturday 1st July kick off 10.45 am Darling St Oval


U13s Maitland vs Olympic Saturday 1st July kick off 10.00 am at Cook Square park

U14s Maitland vs Olympic Saturday 1st July kick off 11.30 am at Cook Square park

U15s Maitland vs Olympic Saturday 1st July kick off 1.00 pm at Cook Square park

U16s Maitland vs Olympic Saturday 1st July kick off 2.30 pm at Cook Square park


Maitland Magpies v Edgeworth Eagles
2.30pm Sunday 2nd July at Cooks Square Park

Last Meeting: FFA Cup, Round 7: Edgeworth 1 Maitland 0 at LMRFF.

Ladder: Maitland 5th (21pts), Edgeworth 3rd (27)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):

Maitland –  Drew Olympic 2-2 (a) Won Jets 6-1 (h), Drew Blues 1-1 (h)
Edgeworth – Won Rosebud 3-0 (a), Lost Jaffas 0-2 (h), Won Magic 3-0 (a)

 Bottom Line

After a week off, Edgeworth returns to action against a Maitland side who know that anything less than a victory could put their finals hopes in jeopardy.

Last weekend the Magpies were cruising to victory at Darling Street, leading 2-0 with less than 12 minutes on the clock. They were just about to jump Olympic and enter pole position in the race for the top four.

But, within three minutes the sides were level again. Scott Smith and Sean Pratt producing stunning strikes to silence the visitors and ensure the race will be as tight as ever to make the finals.

While it was a draw which would have felt like a defeat for Maitland; they are playing the best football they have all season with just one loss in their last five matches since the disappointing defeat at Adamstown.

Edgeworth have been as consistent as ever recently having lost one of their last 14 matches in all competitions.

A break after a difficult Westfield FFA Cup weekend, followed by a trip to Adamstown came at the perfect time for the Eagles which allowed them to recharge their batteries.

It will be the last weekend off that the Eagles have before a frenetic final two months of the season where they will have PlayStation®4 NPL NNSW and Westfield FFA Cup commitments.

While the Magpies haven’t beaten Edgeworth since at least 1997, the last five matches between the sides have been almightily close. The Eagles have won three of those five by only a goal, and the other two have been drawn.

The defending champions have lost just twice all season and deserve to be favourites in this one. But, a Magpies side with the likes of Matt Comerford, Ryan Clarke and Matt Thompson to name a few will push the visitors to the limit.

What the Coaches Said:

Phil Dando (Maitland)

“They are the yardstick for everyone. You measure yourself against them and they are very, very good and they are very tidy. Their rotations, particularly in the midfield is good, so they manage to find a lot of space which creates problems for you. They’ve got the pace of Sanders up front and the experience of [Daniel] McBreen. They are good defensively and well organised. They are everything that you want your own team to be.”

“We’ve matched them. We’ve been close. There’s only been one goal between us in the two games, so we’re not far away from them. We’ve got to make sure that we play as well as we did for large parts of the game on Sunday.”

Damian Zane (Edgeworth)

“They are impressive. I think they are going to miss Ryan Broadley as far as depth goes and the other boys. They should of won [against Hamilton], I think. In the end, they could have lost it but they were really impressive. I’ve definitely spotted some things that they do which are very impressive. They are as good as anyone up front.”

“I think Keanu [Moore] coming back and all of a sudden adding a bit of depth could be a bit of a factor on the weekend. First session this week. The boys come back. Wow. That’s probably one of our best sessions of the year. They see there was a signing. One signing can mean a massive battle for spots.”

Key: Maitland have conceded their last three goals in the final 15 minutes of matches. Is fitness an issue?

Adamstown Rosebud v Valentine Phoenix
2.30pm Saturday 1st July at Adamstown Oval

Last Meeting: Round 5, 2017: Valentine 2 Adamstown 0 at Cahill Oval.

Ladder: Adamstown 9th (10), Valentine 2nd (28)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Adamstown – Won Bears 3-0 (a), Lost Eagles 0-3 (h), Lost Olympic 0-3 (a)
Valentine – Won Jaffas 2-1 (h) Lost Magic 1-3 (h), Won Roosters 1-0 (h)

Bottom Line

Valentine’s third victory in a row over Lambton has put themselves within touching distance of a first finals appearance in Northern NSW’s top flight since 2010 and a win this weekend could all but seal a spot for the Phoenix.

A trip away from Cahill Oval for the first time in the PS4 NPL NNSW since the second weekend in May is sure to please head coach Darren Sills with the lush pastures of Adamstown Oval a stark contrast to the Phoenix’s home ground.

After two straight defeats to Broadmeadow, including a disappointing 3-1 defeat in round 14 Valentine looked to be out of sorts, but they proved that thought wrong on the weekend with a stunning fightback to claim a 2-1 victory over Lambton.

Adamstown also returned to form on the weekend against Weston after three straight defeats and claimed just their second clean sheet of the season in the win.

Nick Webb’s side were well-structured at the back and seem to have turned over a new leaf. Following up last weekend’s result with another good performance this weekend is key for the Rosebuds as they look to escape the cellar.

Since Valentine’s promotion at the end of 2015, the sides have met on three occasions with Adamstown winning twice last season 2-0 and Valentine winning 2-0 in round five earlier this year.

Valentine will head into the match as favourites, but Adamstown seemed to have turned a corner and should give the Phoenix a real test.

What the Coaches Said:

Nick Webb (Adamstown)

“A clean sheet was the objective [on the weekend]. I told them everything else would take care of itself if we can keep that. Again, that’s obviously got to be our main focus; being really tidy in the central areas and hopefully score some goals as well. It’s obviously a key part of our game that we have to fix and we took a massive step last week to doing that.”

“We are working with those guys [up front] and rotating a few players through that area. Ryan Ensor played up top last weekend and got a goal and should have had another one in the first ten minutes. We are rotating that area with some attacking midfielders so they’ll be a fair bit of combination play happening which is a slow process, but it’s getting there.”

Darren Sills (Valentine)

“They’ve got to have their tails up after a win against Weston so it is going to be a hard game. The main thing I’m looking forward to is getting away from Cahill Oval. We’ve had five home games in a row there, the boys are jaded so it’s going to be good for us to get away and play somewhere different.”

“Finals football is not what we are after. We want to win the minor premiership. [It would mean] everything. It would be an amazing thing for the club. It would be a great story for individual coaches, players the like. For all the people who have been at the club a long time, it would mean the world. It would mean the world for me a Sam Griffin as coaches, also the players who have come from other clubs that were not seen as first-grade footballers, who have been given an opportunity at the club.”

Key: Adamstown were rock solid at the back last weekend. They’ll need put in a similar performance against the third best attacking side in the competition.

Lambton Jaffas v Lake Macquarie Roosters
2.30pm Saturday 1st July at Arthur Edden Oval

Last Meeting: Round 5, 2017: Lake Macquarie 0 Lambton 4 at Macquarie Field.

Ladder: Lambton 1st (29), Lakes 7th (16)

Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Lambton – Lost Phoenix 1-2 (a), Won Bears 5-0 (h), Won Eagles 2-0 (a)
Lakes – Lost Magic 0-3 (h), Lost Phoenix 0-1 (a), Won Bears 2-0 (h)

Bottom Line

Both Lambton and Lake Macquarie are coming off disappointing results in round 15 and will aim to bounce back in style.

After leading 1-0 at half-time against the Phoenix on Saturday, Lambton conceded two unanswered goals in the second half to fall 2-1 to the Phoenix. The Jaffas third loss in as many matches against their bogey side.

But, after defeats this season the Jaffas have responded in fine fashion. In all competitions, Lambton has lost just four matches. The three matches played after defeats thus far have resulted in 4-0, 3-2 and 5-0 victories.

Once again, Lakes have the unenviable task of playing the Jaffas after they have had a defeat so they will have their work cut out for them on Saturday.

After a strong start to the season where the Roosters lost just one of their first six matches, they have now won just one of their last seven to fall from the top of the table to seventh.

Lake Macquarie’s biggest concern comes in the front third, scoring just four times in their last five outings and they have been kept scoreless in their last two matches.

The goals have also dried up for striker Sam Walker who scored seven times in the Roosters first eight matches. Since then he has managed just one goal in his last six outings.

With the Roosters in a bit of a slump, top-of-the-table Lambton will be favourites to make it four wins from four following defeats in 2017. 

What the Coaches Said:

Anthony Richards (Lakes)

“Obviously, they are riddled with talent. I guess over all the games we have played this year that first 45 minutes [against Lambton] is the only time we have been blown off the park by any side. The second half was a lot better. It was 3-0 at half-time so we were gone at half-time in that game.”

“We are looking to improve on our start on the weekend and try and stay in the contest a bit longer. If we can stay in the contest a bit longer we will give ourselves a chance. I think we showed way too much respect last time. Jobe [Wheelhouse] pretty much controlled the entire game in that one. I know he’s missing this time so that might help us this time control the game a bit better.”

Key: The bounce-back effect. Can Lambton continue their strong record after suffering defeat?

Broadmeadow Magic v Charlestown City Blues
2.30pm Sunday 2nd July at Magic Park

Last Meeting: Round 5, 2017: Charlestown 1 Broadmeadow 0 at Lisle Carr Oval.

Ladder: Broadmeadow 6th (21), Charlestown 8th (15)

Last 3 Starts (most recent first):

Broadmeadow – Won Phoenix 3-1 (a), Won Bears 4-1 (a), Lost Eagles 0-3 (a)
Charlestown – Won Jets 4-0 (h), Drew Magpies 1-1 (a), Lost Phoenix 1-3 (a)

Bottom Line

Seemingly out of contention for the finals series a month ago, when they were humbled 3-0 by Edgeworth on their home patch, Broadmeadow Magic have roared back to life since and are now within touching distance of the top four.

Since the Edgeworth defeat, Broadmeadow have won five matches straight in all competitions and have racked up the goals.

Magic have now scored 17 goals in their last five matches, which is in stark contrast to the mere 14 goals they scored in their first 11 PS4 NPL NNSW matches this season.

The signing of former Jets and Glory midfielder Mitch Oxborrow has certainly helped raise the confidence of the squad, with the front third of Dino Fajkovic, James Virgili and Kale Bradbury all firing in recent weeks.

Charlestown returned to form in style on Saturday as they put four past a disappointing Jets Youth outfit.

Striker Rene Ferguson has gone from strength to strength this season and is now equal first in the golden boot standings after scoring twice on the weekend.

With the news, this week that Scott Smith and Kane Goodchild will return to the Blues in 2018, his combination with the experienced front men is sure to be a mouth-watering prospect from the Charlestown faithful.

Back to the present, and Joel Steward scored his first goal in the top grade for the club against the Jets which will provide a huge boost to his confidence going into the weekend.

Charlestown won a tight contest earlier in the year, with Josh Maguire scoring a stunning free-kick after Broadmeadow keeper Niko Giantsopoulos was sent off.

If the Blues bring their best on Sunday it will provide a tough test for Magic who are the favourites to take all three points in this contest.

What the Coaches Said:

Ruben Zadkovich (Broadmeadow)

“We didn’t really play our best [last time against Charlestown] if I remember correctly, but we still probably did enough to get something out of the game. It was one of them ones like most games in the first round where not much went our way and then we lost our goalkeeper with a red card and then the boys put it in the top corner from a free-kick. We’ll know what they offer, they’ll compete and work really, really hard for each other. It’ll be a tough game for sure for my boys.”

“I’ve felt that all year [we had confidence in front of goal], it just didn’t really happen. The way we play, we want to create plenty of chances, we want a lot of the ball, we want to be dynamic and it’s nice to see it coming together. Sometimes to change a style of football in a team, and also change a mindset it takes time, so it’s nice to see it’s slowly reaping some rewards.”

Shane Pryce (Charlestown)

“I think the guys’ performance on the weekend after two/three weeks off was commendable although Magic at home is a different story. They’ve got some confidence now, so I’m actually looking forward to the contest. There’s some guys that are starting in their second first-grade game and the actual test will be against a confident Magic side who are looking to scrape into that fourth spot.”

“I just think it’s a lot more settled side [for Magic] and Zadkovich has probably settled on selections a lot more and probably found what he thinks is going to work for them. I think they’ve been a consistent side when they’ve just had the same sort of starting side and they’ve bought a player that played a high level in Oxborrow.”

Key: Magic have won just two of six home games this season. Can they turn it around against the Blues?


Reece Papas signs for Hamilton Olympic

Hamilton Olympic welcome back Reece Papas!!

After stints at Newcastle Jets and Central Coast Mariners all at Olympic are happy to see Reece back in the blue and white.

source:Tom Tsamouras

PS4 NPL NNSW Round 15: Hamilton Olympic held to a 2-2 draw by Maitland

Hamilton Olympic 2 (Smith 79’, Pratt 81’) drew with Maitland Magpies 2 (Comerford 32’, M.Thompson (p) 49’) at Darling Street Oval.

Hamilton Olympic pulled a point out of the fire and could have stolen all three in the ‘Match of the Round’ as they produced a stunning rear-guard action, scoring two goals in the final 11 minutes against Maitland.

Olympic were down by two goals heading towards the final ten minutes, but a stunning strike from Scott Smith and a vicious volley from Sean Pratt ensured honours were even after 90 minutes.

The home side started the game on the front foot as Rhys Cooper – in his third match back from injury – wreaked havoc in the attacking third.

Cooper’s first chance burst through the hands of Magpies keeper Matt Trott and into the goal and minutes later Cooper had a wonderful chance to break the deadlock from inside the box on the right, but he slid his shot wide to the left.

Matt Comerford made Olympic pay for missing their earlier chances in the 32nd minute after an intricate interchange of passing between himself and Matt Thompson.

Comerford played a one-two with the former Newcastle Jets Captain and chipped Tyler Warren in the Hamilton goal to make it 1-0.

After conceding Hamilton struggled to make any headway with the Magpies controlling much of the ball as they headed to the break with a one-goal advantage.

When then returned after the interval the visitor’s dominance continued with Comerford darting down the left edge and having too much pace for Olympic defender Marcus Duncan.

Duncan dove in on Maitland’s speedster and gave away a penalty, which Matt Thompson duly converted to make in 2-0 in the 49th minute.

For the next 30 minutes, the Magpies appeared comfortable, sniffing out any half chance which Olympic created. That was until Tommy Spencer came onto the ground and Olympic began to find some space in the front third.

First, Spencer put his header from close range over the bar. It seemed that was the moment for Olympic. However, the chances continued to flow for the home side.

When Scott Smith turned on the edge of the box and curled a left-footed strike into the top left corner the match was back on.

Two minutes later and Olympic were level when Sean Pratt hit a searing volley from the right side of the box into the top right corner, sending the home fans into raptures.

The chances weren’t gone for Olympic though. Smith played Spencer through the heart of the Magpies defence in stoppage time and went one-on-one with Trott. Maitland’s keeper made a brilliant one-on-one save, sticking out his left boot to save the day.

The draw leaves just one point separating fourth from sixth on the PlayStation®4 NPL NNSW ladder with Hamilton, Maitland and Broadmeadow looking to fight it out for the last spot over the next seven weeks.

Olympic coach Mick Bolch thought his side were too inconsistent over the 90 minutes to win the match.

“I thought we were really good for the first 20 minutes. We probably deserved to be up by two, Rhys Cooper had three one-one-ones.

“Last 20 minutes I thought we were really good and ran over the top of them. Middle 40 minutes, [we were] terrible.”

“We could have won at the death there with Tommy Spencer. Did we deserve to win it? Probably not. I’m happy to get out of jail.”

While disappointed with conceding two goals in the final 15 minutes, Magpies boss Phil Dando didn’t feel like “we threw three points away.”

“They’ve gone away, they slipped away,” Dando said.

“We knew it would be an arm-wrestle. We knew it would be a tight contest. I thought we did really well absorbing their pressure early one and then we played some good football.”

Looking back on the result, Dando was pleased to take a point.

“If you would have said before the game, there is a point, we probably would have taken it. The biggest surprise to me was that we were so dominant for such a large period of the game. I just thought it would be an arm-wrestle all the way through.

“That’s credit to our guys, they’ve worked their socks off and probably didn’t quite get what they deserved today.”

Under 20s Olympic won 5-0
Under 18s Olympic won 5-0

NPL Youth
Olympic vs Lambton Jaffas FC
Under 16s Lambton 0-5
Under 15s Olympic won 1-0
Under 14s Lambton won 1-3
Under 13s Olympic won 6-0

Zone League 2
Olympic vs Argenton
1st Grade Argenton won 1-4
2nd Grade Olympic won 4-1

NET results
Under 12s Olympic defeated Lambton 3-2
Under 11s Olympic & Sth Wallsend drew 1-1
Under 10s Olympic & Sth Wallsend drew 2-2

Olympic Junior Results
Under 16a Olympic defeated Magic 4-2
Under 15a Olympic & Kotara drew 3-3
Under 13a Olympic defeated Charlestown 4-1
Under 12b Olympic defeated Kahibah 4-0

Under 8/2 Olympic defeated Medowie
Under 6/1 Olympic defeated Cooks Hill

PS4 NPL NNSW Round 15:Hamilton Olympic take on Maitland Magpies

Hamilton Olympic v Maitland Magpies

2.30pm Sunday 25th June at Darling Street Oval

Last Meeting: Round 4, 2017: Maitland 0 Hamilton 2 at Cooks Square Park
Ladder: Hamilton 4th (21pts), Maitland 5th (20)
Last 3 Starts (most recent first):

Hamilton – Won Rosebud 3-0 (h), Lost Jaffas 2-3 (a), Won Magic 2-1 (a)

Maitland – Won Jets 6-1 (h), Drew Blues 1-1 (h), Lost Rosebuds 1-3 (a)

Bottom Line

Top four ambitions will go on the line in this weekend’s ‘Match of the Round’ when Maitland meet Hamilton at Darling Street Oval.

Just a point separates the sides with both having played 12 matches, and three points on Sunday could make all the difference in the race for the top four.

Hamilton come into the fixture fresh from the bye, and having missed the Westfield FFA Cup weekend, Olympic will not have played a competitive match in three weeks.

It has given Mick Bolch’s side the chance to freshen up and get over any niggles or injuries as they gear up for a huge eight matches to end the regular season.

After a run of three straight matches in the PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues NNSW without a victory, Maitland has grown in confidence following a competitive performance against Edgeworth in the Westfield FFA Cup where they pushed the Eagles all the way in a 1-0 defeat.

The Magpies have taken that good form back into the league season where they dismantled the Jets Youth on Sunday in style, winning 6-1.

Josh Dutton-Black scored his first PS4 NPL goal for the club and seems a key for Maitland over the final two months of the competition, along with new recruit Chris Fayers who has arrived mid-season from Edgeworth.

While Maitland have only tasted victory once in their last five matches against Olympic, they have proved to be somewhat of a bogey side for the men from Hamilton. They drew twice with them last season and had a win each in 2015. Earlier this season Hamilton were too strong in a 2-0 win at Cooks Square Park.

It’s a match which shapes as a tight one and only home ground advantage tilts the scales in favour of Olympic.

What the Coaches Said:

Michael Bolch (Hamilton)

“They have trained really well in the last couple of weeks so hopefully they will be focused. It will be a big game, so I’m sure they will be up for it. It’s crucial for every team [the next eight weeks]. There are about four or five teams that are chasing those [top] four spots, so it’s a big eight weeks coming up for all teams.”

“[Maitland] have had a couple of good results the last few weeks. They put the Jets to the sword on the weekend and scored some really good goals. If we take the chances we are creating I’m sure we’ll be right in the game. Rhys Cooper is a bonus being back for us. He did really well in his 60 minutes against Adamstown three weeks ago and his combination with Kane Goodchild and Scott Smith is only going to get better over the next eight weeks.”

Phil Dando (Maitland)

“We thought maybe we had done enough to get something out of it [against Olympic in round four]. We started off sloppy and they tend to play a bit more direct and we didn’t deal with it. They imposed themselves early on and got on top of us. We failed to match them in the intensity I suppose, so we need to ensure we do that.”

“We’ve just got to play at our best. We have some really good games in us but there are occasions when we switch off and I don’t know if the belief has been there. I keep telling them that they are as good as anyone going around and on our day, we are as good as anyone going around. I don’t know if they always believe me. They’ve just got to take that belief into games and they should do now after the good win the other day. We knocked the ball around well on a muddy pitch [against the Jets].”

Key: How will Hamilton start after three weeks without a match in the PS4 NPL?

U18s  Hamilton Olympic vs Maitland 10.45 am Sunday 25th June at Darling Street Oval

U20s  Hamilton Olympic vs Maitland 12.30 pm Sunday 25th June at Darling Street Oval


Hamilton Olympic vs Lambton Jaffas Saturday 24th June at darling Street Oval

U13s kick off at 10.00am

U14s kick off at 11.30am

U15s kick off at 1.00pm

U16s kick off at 2.30pm


Charlestown City Blues v Newcastle Jets Youth
2.30pm Saturday 24th June at Lisle Carr Oval

Last Meeting: Round 4, 2017: Jets Youth 1 Charlestown 4 at Lisle Carr Oval.
Ladder: Charlestown 8th (12), Jets Youth 9th (9)
Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Charlestown – Drew Magpies 1-1 (a), Lost Phoenix 1-3 (a), Lost Bears 0-3 (a)

Jets – Lost Magpies 1-6 (a), Won Rosebud 3-2 (a), Won Jaffas 2-1 (a)

Bottom Line

Two sides in need of three points meet at Lisle Carr Oval on Sunday, with the Blues looking to win for the first time since April and the Jets Youth eager to erase last weekend’s defeat from their minds.

After two straight victories in the PS4 NPL NNSW, it seemed the Jets Youth would climb up the table over the back half of the season. However, on Sunday those hopes seemed to take a dive as Maitland provided the young Jets with a reality check.

The Magpies put six past them on a sodden pitch which didn’t suit the Jets’ style and with heavy pitches expected to be a feature of the final eight rounds, it may get tough for the Jets Youth.

Coach Clayton Zane has conceded the loss of striker Kristian Brymora is a significant one for his side, with Brymora bringing a physical presence, which is crucial against sides of which most bring greater size than the Jets.

While their opponents Charlestown have brought in some youth over the previous weeks, the experienced core of their squad remains the same with Matt Tull and Dan Casciaroli the important cogs in the midfield along with the attacking prowess of Rene Ferguson in the front third.

Charlestown haven’t won in six matches, but their last result was a positive step forward after consecutive defeats.

They drew with Maitland at Cooks Square Park at the start of the month and after missing the match with Lake Macquarie on Sunday, the Blues may come into this one a little rusty, while also eager and excited to be back on the park.

The greater physical presence of Charlestown makes them slight favourites on Saturday, although it is very rare that the Jets put in two disappointing performances in a row.

What the Coaches Said:

Shane Pryce (Charlestown)

“It’s an up and down season for them. It’s tough, they didn’t have their number one keeper in there [on the weekend]. It’s a reflection of them being in the comp for a while now. They either go really well one week, and they are bad another. I guess with young players it is consistency that they struggle with. I don’t think [the match] will be near what it was the first match against them. We played really well and they might have some changes in personnel as well.”

“Not much has changed in my mind, the feeling that I’m not going to be at the club next year. I’ve had a chat to the players and it’s really important for them that they put their best foot forward for the best of the season. I don’t want to finish the season where we roll over and die. I don’t think that’s in the character of some of the players and it’s definitely not in my character.”

Key: Can the Jets Youth respond to last weekend’s thumping handed out by Maitland?


Valentine Phoenix v Lambton Jaffas
2.30pm Saturday 24th June at Cahill Oval

Last Meeting: Round 4, 2017: Lambton 2 Valentine 3 at Arthur Edden Oval
Ladder: Valentine 3rd (25), Lambton 1st (29)
Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Valentine – Lost Magic 1-3 (h), Won Roosters 1-0 (h), Won Blues 3-1 (h)

Lambton – Won Bears 5-0 (h), Won Eagles 2-0 (a), Won Olympic 3-2 (h)

Bottom Line

After their loss to the Jets Youth in round ten Lambton have returned to form in style, scoring ten goals in three matches since the defeat and going two points clear at the top of the PS4 NPL NNSW ladder.

The Jaffas thumped the Bears on Saturday, and what was even more impressive was their ability not to rely on one source for their goals with four different Jaffas’ players scoring on the weekend.

The visitors will be eager to beat their bogey side of late who have won their last two matches against them. Valentine won 3-2 last year in round 13 and won 3-2 earlier this season against the Jaffas.

For Valentine, Saturday’s match marks the end of five consecutive matches at Cahill Oval in the PS4 NPL NNSW. The Phoenix had an unblemished record on the ground this year, before their defeat to Broadmeadow Magic on Saturday.

While Valentine had won three straight matches before the game against Magic and looked set to secure a spot in the finals, a loss in the Westfield FFA Cup, followed by the loss on the weekend just seems to have shaken the Phoenix.

They were sitting eight points clear of fifth-placed Maitland before last weekend, but after both the Magpies and Magic won that gap has been reduced to five. A win this weekend is crucial for the Phoenix to ensure they keep the chasing teams at bay.

After their recent form, Lambton head into this match as favourites, but it will be tight, with Valentine aware of the importance of at least getting a point out of the match.

What the Coaches Said:

Sam Griffin (Valentine Assistant)

“We got it wrong tactically against Magic. We thought we should try and negate their pace by sitting off and picking out wide and deciding where to engage them. It probably worked to an extent, but not as well as we would have hoped and they got in behind more easily. You can’t concede three goals and let them get behind as easily as they did and expect them to win too many games.”

“There’s probably 11 battles going on out there [against Lambton]. I spoke to Sillsy [Darren Sills] today about trying to pick where their weakness is and it was a bit of a short conversation because there aren’t many. I think we can’t really worry about them too much, we’ve just got to make sure that we are better than what we were last week.”

Key: After two losses in a row, can the Phoenix turn it around against a Lambton side who has struggled against them recently?


Lake Macquarie Roosters v Broadmeadow Magic
2.30pm Sunday 25th June at Macquarie Field

Last Meeting: Round 4, 2017: Broadmeadow 1 Lake Macquarie 4 at Magic Park.
Ladder: Lakes 7th (16), Broadmeadow 6th (18)
Past 3 Starts (most recent first):

Broadmeadow – Won Phoenix 3-1 (a), Won Bears 4-1 (a), Lost Eagles 0-3 (a)

Lakes – Lost Phoenix 0-1 (a), Won Bears 2-0 (h), Lost Eagles 1-2 (h)

Bottom Line

Broadmeadow will look to make it a hat-trick of wins in the PS4 NPL NNSW for the first time in 2017 when they meet Lake Macquarie on Sunday afternoon.

Magic have piled on the goals in their last two matches in the league scoring four in their victory over Weston in round 13 and three on the weekend against Valentine.

Broadmeadow’s two PS4 NPL NNSW victories have bookended two strong performances in the Westfield FFA Cup when they racked up four and three goals respectively in their round six and seven fixtures.

They seem to be playing with greater width, allowing James Virgili and Kale Bradbury more space on the flanks and it certainly showed against the Phoenix, with Virgili scoring twice.

Lake Macquarie come into the match fresh from a three-week break, with byes and wet weather affecting their schedule.

Lakes have gone loss, win, loss over their last three matches so if you believe in that trend a win is due this weekend.

They were dogged in their last start against Valentine, but just couldn’t get the job done with Matt Toohey sent off in the second half and Jalon Brown scoring a late goal for the Phoenix.

The Roosters will bring plenty of belief into the clash after their wonderful showing in round four where they took down Broadmeadow 4-1 at Magic Park. They will be looking for more of the same this weekend.

With Broadmeadow having won four straight in all competitions they enter this match as favourites against a Lakes side who have been a little inconsistent of late.

What the Coaches Said:

Ruben Zadkovich (Broadmeadow)

“We are going alright, just putting a few wins together is nice. We know it will be a tough game, especially out there. Like most teams, they will rise to play against us. We are really looking forward to it. The boys have got a good bit of vibe going at the moment and teams spirit which is good, but we’ll just take it as it comes. Really looking forward to the weekend.”

“There were four or five games in that first round where we played some really good stuff and didn’t get rewarded. We didn’t take our chances and coughed up penalties at crucial times and conceded poor goals. It was kind of like Murphy’s Law, that along with some key injuries and a couple of suspensions and silly red cards. We were a bit unlucky there when we did play some good stuff and didn’t get any rewards from it, so I was always quite confident that it would turn around.”

Anthony Richards (Lakes)

“I’m tipping it’s going to be a massively tough game for us on the weekend. The Magic boys are flying at the moment. They are playing well and scoring goals and progressing through to the FFA Cup, so they are really confident and they picked up a really good player in Mitch Oxborrow.”

“I don’t think getting going is going to be the problem [after three weeks without a match]. The boys are buzzing. They are busting to get a game and you could see that on the weekend in the warm-up when everyone had gone, we were still training and having a kick at the ground there and then even started some diving headers in the mud. The boys were keen, they were right to play and they were really disappointed they didn’t get on, on the weekend.”

Key: Can Broadmeadow’s front third continue their strong form against Lakes?


Weston Bears v Adamstown Rosebud
2.30pm Sunday 25th June at Rockwell Automation Park

Last Meeting: Round 4, 2017: Adamstown 3 Weston 3 at Adamstown Oval.
Ladder: Weston 10th (7), Adamstown 11th (7)
Last 3 Starts (most recent first):

Adamstown – Lost Olympic 0-3 (a), Lost Jets 2-3 (h), Won Magpies 3-1 (h)

Weston – Lost Jaffas 0-5 (a), Lost Magic 1-4 (h), Lost Roosters 0-2 (a)

Bottom Line

For the second season running Weston and Adamstown are in a battle to avoid the wooden spoon, and while there are still plenty of matches left in the season a win this weekend for either club could go a long way to ensuring they finish the season strongly.

The Bears will be looking to for a strong performance at home after a difficult week which included a 5-0 defeat at the hands of the ladder leading Lambton Jaffas.

Weston have been unable to get themselves going again after a heart-breaking last minute defeat at Valentine in round 11.

The weekend before Weston put in one of their best performances of the season in a 3-0 win over Charlestown but have since lost four straight.

Since the round 10 victory, the Bears have conceded 13 goals in four matches – including nine in the past two – and a return home could be just the boost they need.

Like the Bears, Adamstown put in one of their best performances of the season against Maitland in round 11 and have struggled since.

Last weekend the Rosebuds went down 3-0 to Edgeworth who are going through a solid run of form.

The loss to the Eagles was Adamstown’s third straight and they have leaked three goals in each of those three defeats. Coach Nick Webb will aim to tighten up their defence this weekend.

Earlier in the season, the sides couldn’t be separated after a 3-3 draw, however, it was a match Adamstown would have felt like they had lost after racing to a 3-1 lead inside 16 minutes.

There is very little between the two sides, with Weston going into the match slight favourites at Rockwell Automation Park.

What the Coaches Said:

Steve Piggott (Weston)

“We had a 3-all draw with them last time and gave them a big head start and mowed them down. It will be a battle of the bottom two and a bit of pride at stake I suppose. After last week’s pretty poor effort defensively we’ll have to be a lot better. They’ve got some threats, a couple of guys that can score goals, Alex Read and the like. They haven’t been going well either so it will be a battle of two teams probably both looking to boost confidence.”

“There’s a few games in the first round that we let slip and Adamstown is probably one of them. We gave them a big head start and probably should have gone on and won that match. Ten games later from that game you would think both teams would have matured a bit. But, again I can only talk for us, we’ve conceded nine goals in two weeks and that is way too many and we’ve had to look pretty closely at the defence this week and hopefully, we can improve.”

Nick Webb (Adamstown)

“I think that is the biggest challenge. Part of the thing that I will be talking to them about this week, is that I am the coach. I am not a caretaker, I’m not just making sure they are all feeling good and I’m here to coach. That’s the biggest point I want to make to the club. I’m the coach and I want to prove that I want to be here next year as well.”

“The next couple of weeks are going to determine that, so I’m looking for them to push hard on their confidence side of it and the senior players step up and show the younger boys how it is done and that starts with body language and attitude. I’m looking to prove a point to them and show that I do want to coach this side next year as well.”

Key: Can Adamstown tighten up at the back, after conceding three goals in each of their last three matches?