Updated: Oct 19, 2022
Melbourne City made it two from two as we took home the win against a surprisingly disappointing Brisbane side on Friday night.
Starting this season well, our City boys were free-flowing in the first half while keeping the Roar silent in attack, with the centurion Jamie Maclaren getting two goals (albeit not knowing much about the first). After an impressive opening, the boys went out in the second half with energy and guile before Taras Gomulka was sent off.
It wasn’t to be for Brisbane as tactical genius and expert play from City helped the visitors claim a second straight win, but what did we learn from the game? Let’s get right into it:
Resilience in spades
As you would expect from a team who has been crowned Premiers in back-to-back years, City has tonight shown that we have what it takes to go for three.
Despite going down to ten men with more than forty minutes remaining, we’ve somehow been able to return back to Victoria with three points. Tom Glover – although having issues with his goal kicks – keeps a clean sheet for the first time this season, furthering the argument that he is the rightful number one.
Some serious questions have to be asked of the Roar for not being able to break us down in the second half, but more attention should go toward the masterclass that Patrick Kisnorbo pulled out of the hat. Expertly organised, our boys were able to see off any forward movement by the Roar while still holding our own in general play; a very handy trait if we are to grind away points later in the season.
I’d even argue that this City side looks immensely better than our Premiers Plate-winning side from last year; even with only ten men.
VAR woes continue
No matter how hard the game tries to improve in Australia, it will always have one major letdown while it exists. The VAR.
Tim Danaskos took his sweet time pulling out the red card before undertaking a lengthy process of reviewing the decision before eventually sticking by the send-off. This may have been a fair turn of events if it wasn’t for the fact that Taras Gomulka did not put Kai Trewin in any danger with his studs. Was it a tough challenge? Yes. Did it deserve a card? Indeed.
But not red.
This decision sets an awful precedent. Sending off players after every hard challenge will get the A-League Men nowhere this season. It will only provide the average AFL fan more ammunition to ignorantly call the sport “weak”. The centurion keeps getting better Jamie Maclaren continues to prove his worth to our club.
Back when he signed for us in 2019, we were coming out of quite a difficult period as a club. Most of us probably thought he would use his time to slingshot back into Europe, but boy was that not the case. Multiple trophies, three golden boots, 100 games and 80 goals later, Jamie Maclaren is no doubt a legend of our beautiful club.
According to ALeagueStats.com, Jamie Maclaren was sitting on 121 A-League Men goals prior to tonight. Now on 123, he is only 19 goals behind Victory's ‘He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’ Kosovan. Could this be the season he breaks that tally?
After all, the man is still only 29 years old. He could reach unbelievable heights.
We have often been mistaken for a club that has no identity, but that could not be further from the truth. We’re a club that lives and breaths for our players. Cult heroes, young guns and certainly our crucial goal-scorers. Our fans can be critical at times but also have learned to appreciate what we have while we have it, and Jamie Maclaren cannot be taken for granted.
We really are a lucky set of fans, aren’t we?
An absolutely fantastic win. City played proper football from start to finish despite losing Gomulka early in the second half. We will surely miss the young midfielder in the upcoming Melbourne Derby, but hopefully this will open the door for Richard Van der Venne to make his mark.
Get down to AAMI Park come Saturday night. You won’t want to miss this one.