Gold Coast crush Adelaide
Gold Coast United have recorded just their second win of the season following their upset 3-0 thrashing of fellow cellar dwellers Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium on Friday night.
The bottom-placed side defeated their more fancied opponents in counter-attacking style courtesy of first-half goals to Ben Halloran and Marceo Rigters and a late finish from Dylan Macallister.
Halloran was gifted with a goal following a defensive shamble in Adelaide’s box in the 18th minute, while Rigters struck a thunderous shot from 20 yards on 36 minutes and Macallister wrapped up the points in added time to ensure further pressure is heaped on an already under the pump Reds coach Rini Coolen.
In what began as a dour and cagey affair between the two bottom-placed sides it was Reds winger Iain Ramsay in an unfamiliar left-back role who injected life into the match on 10 minutes.
The 23-year-old went on a dazzling run before his deflected cross was intelligently flicked on by Sergio van Dijk at the near post only for Bruce Djite to miss the ball with an attempted header from point blank range and for marquee star Dario Vidosic to have his follow-up effort blocked.
Gold Coast soon hit back however in the 12th minute through Macallister.
The former Wellington Phoenix striker worked a smart one-two with James Brown in the middle of the park before the Australian U23 representative tracked his run into the box feeding him with a lobbed through ball before the 29-year-old was denied by a one-handed save from Reds custodian Eugene Galekovic.
The Queensland side further turned the tables on Adelaide when Halloran scored on 18 minutes in bizarre fashion via a counter-attack.
Halloran broke down the right wing after being put clear by an unusual source in defender Kristian Rees and into the Reds’ penalty box, but held his shot to square to an unmarked Brown just 10 yards out.
Brown’s attempted shot was scrambled away however by three United defenders before the ball fell to Halloran whose left-foot effort took a wicked deflection off Francisco Usucar into the back of the net, wrong footing Galekovic.
With the game again becoming static and rigid once more neither side were willing to take risks with Gold Coast preferring to hit Adelaide on the counter.
It seemed to work for the bottom-placed side as they found their second of the match in the 36th minute through a driven 20-yard strike from Dutchman Rigters.
The lively Hallaron, who continued to switch with Rigters and Brown in Gold Coast’s three-man midfield attack, snaked his way into the box taking on United defenders with relative ease before he cut the ball back to Rigters who smashed the ball past a flat-footed Galekovic.
Identical to the first-half both teams remained reserved although Coolen switched the defensive-minded Usucar at half-time for Spase Dilevski.
Again breaking free against the run of play, Gold Coast almost made it 3-0 on the hour mark when full-back Adama Traore dashed down the left-flank and whipped in a well-timed cross to an in-running Macallister, however the Sydney-born forward fired his header over.
With a result desperately needed the Reds opted to bring on 15-year-old Teeboy Kamara who in the process became the youngest ever Hyundai A-League debutant in history.
Adelaide soon began to push forward in numbers and almost found the goal on 80 minutes through van Dijk.
Vidosic’s long ball into the box found Dilevski free who nodded the ball into the path of van Dijk to give the Dutch striker an open goal to blaze into however under pressure the reigning A-League Golden Boot winner could only get the slightest of touches allowing Moss to rush back and gather the ball on the line after he had originally mis-judged the long delivery.
Macallister topped off the resounding victory and a much needed three points for Gold Coast in stoppage time when he buried Peter Jungschlager’s across goal header from Paul Beekmans' drifted set-piece.
Adelaide United 0
Gold Coast 3 (Halloran 18, Rigters 36, Macallister 92)