A late winner from a disputed free kick gave the Pirates the win and an important opportunity to leapfrog Sutherland in the race for a finals berth. This was an enthralling encounter from both teams that featured a four goal haul from prolific striker Roderigo Teixeira.
Sutherland 4 Botany Bay Pirates 5
The two teams knew what was at stake in the game and Sutherland nearly took the lead in the opening moments when a shot by Figon struck a post.
Shortly after Botany opened the scoring when Denny Dutra sped down the right crossed to Teixeira looming support who smashed his shot into the top right corner.
Sutherland came back when Anton Karla had a fierce drive tipped over by keeper Aly who then partially blocked an attempt by Slaven Ljuboja which stuck the right post and away to safety.
The Pirates extended their lead from a fast counter attack when the slippery Denny Dutra sped away found Teixiera lurking unmarked who cleverly flicked the ball over keeper Radmilo.
The luck was not with Sutherland when a deflected shot fell to Lucio Tilman who crashed his shot against the left upright.
Sutherland keeper Bojan Radmilo did well to keep out a cheeky side flick from Kraljevic and just before half time made an excellent save low down from a shot by Dutra.
In a very competitive half the Pirates went to the break holding a valuable 0-2 lead.
In the second half Sutherland came out firing and peppered shots at the Pirates goal with Keeper Aly making a superb stop to deny Goran Ljuboja.
Then keeper Radmilo made a superb block when he came out to prevent Kraljevic from extending their lead from a quick Pirates counter attack.
Sutherland finally got the break through they were craving when Goran Ljuboja crashed an unstoppable drive into the top right corner directly from a freekick.
Sutherland continued to pile on the pressure with Lucio Tilman forcing a great save from Aly in the Pirates goal.
The Pirates risk defending with only 3 defenders as striker Teixiera sometimes slips away to lurk unmarked upfront. On one occasion Sutherland had keeper Bojan Radmilo to thank for making an important stop to prevent Botany scoring again.
To the delight of the home crowd Sutherland levelled to make it 2-2 when Goran Ljuboja slammed a shot direct from a corner into the net.
The momentum was with Sutherland as they continued the pressure and Aly in the Pirates goal was being called into constant action as the Pirates worked hard to stem the flow.
Nearing the end of the game the contest turned on its head when Dutra sped down the left and his hard low cross was eventually stabbed over the line by Teixiera giving Roderigo his hat-trick with a hat trick of assists from Dutra.
Almost immediately from the restart the ever dangerous Teixiera then turned provider when he teed up Dutra to make it 2-4 to the Pirates.
With the game seemingly sealed Sutherland gallantly refused to give up and pulled one back when Slaven. Ljuboja scored from a long range shot to make it 3-4.
With time running out and Sutherland desperately searching for another goal their answer came when a deflected shot fell to Dominic Mercuri who slammed the ball home to make 4-4.
But the enthralling game took another twist with only seconds left on the clock. The Pirates launched a raid down the left which saw Sutherland’s Dominic Mercuri slid in fast to knock the ball out of play without much contact to the player. The referee awarded a free kick for an illegal slide tackle to the dismay of the home side.
Roderigo Teixeira stepped up and deceptively slammed his shot inside the near post to give the Pirates a 4-5 win.
Botany snuck home in a thrilling game that showcased great skills, commitment, great shots and saves, desperate defending and determination to win in a contest that was a credit to both sides.
Source : Football NSW
Published : 21/12/2008