Sydney Benfica held off a late rally from Dural to win their round 6 Womens Super League contest and thus leapfrog Dural in the competition standings.
The game started with both teams settling quickly and looking to assert a dominance over the other with some entertaining open play. Dural were perhaps shading the possession but both keepers were being kept busy.
Stand-in keeper Rachael Hui was on hand to make a quick reaction save from Candelari’s close range header and tipped a goalbound shot from Sim-Sing over bar. Benfica keeper Abi-Sassine made a smart save from Durals Demelza Howard.
Benfica broke the deadlock when Stopps dispossessed a Dural defender and ran on to slot the ball passed the keeper.
Sydney Benfica then caught Dural off guard as they doubled their advantage almost immediately after the restart when Di Martino hit a long range effort that flew past the keeper into the right hand side of the net to make it 2-0.
Dural redoubled their efforts to get back into the game and peppered the Benfica keeper in search of a goal. But the Benfica defence had been strong all half at closing Dural down by denying them time and space anywhere within scoring range.
Just after half time Benfica asserted control of the game when a long throw down court saw Benfica’s Candelari sneak around behind the Dural defence and left with a one on one with keeper coolly slotted the ball home to make it 3-0.
The 3-0 scoreline perhaps not fully representing the closeness of possession and goal attempts of the two sides.
Dural finally got some reward when Zineta De Beer ran on to a pass and slid the ball past the keeper to make it 3-1.
Dural were back in the game game when Demelza Howard finished off a smart three player move. Zineta De Beer quickly slipped the ball to Caitlin Mahony whose pass across the face of the goal found Howard free to bury the ball from close range.
The game went from end to end with Dural looking to level and Benfica striving to give themselves a bigger lead with both keepers called upon to make crucial saves.
But in the end Benfica held off Durals challenge to claim all three points in a hard fought and entertaining game from both sides.
Source : Football NSW
Published : 17/11/2008