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Navy Blues brush by youths

Words: Gordon Watson

Wednesday 21 September 2016

Picture: PhototekNZ

MELBOURNE, Australia - Auckland City FC have registered a low key 5-1 win over a Melbourne City A side as their Stirling Sports Premiership preparations picked up.

In a match that was a useful training exercise ahead of Sunday's clash with Melbourne City's first team, a number of youngsters were given a chance to start.

Nicolai Berry, Alfie Rogers, Harry Edge and Reid Drake and new signing Enaut Zubikarai appeared in their first match abroad for the club as coach Ramon Tribulietx sought to give players an opportunity for game time.

The visitors opened the scoring against a young side after just 16 minutes when Ryan De Vries finished beyond goalkeeper James Delianov.

But Melbourne City A stormed back just six minutes later after a goalmouth scramble saw the ball bobble over the line.

Zubirakai's afternoon took a turn for the worst when he came for a ball then collided with Yusuf Ahmed. Ahmed managed to hit the crossbar but Zubikarai was left laid out on the pitch with a suspected head injury.

Zubirakai was taken to a local hospital by ambulance and looks highly doubtful to make Sunday's second match of the tour.

Danyon Drake, who enjoyed a Lotto NRFL Premier League title win with Central United, replaced Zubirakai but the next significant action took place at the other end of the pitch.

De Vries netted his second when he chipped Delianov with five minutes to go before the break and Berry made sure there was a degree of comfort when he scored on 44 minutes.

Tribulietx made eight changes at the break and Melbourne City A enjoyed a good spell of attacking pressure winning a series of corners they were ultimately unable to score from.

Dylan Burns then added to the Navy Blues tally with a brace inside two minutes midway through the second half. The first of those he scored after a one on one with Delianov the second a header after he met a cross by Takuya Iwata flush with 15 minutes to go.

Auckland City FC's next pre-season match is scheduled for Sunday 25 September in Melbourne when the Navy Blues take on a combined City first and reserves selection at 10am local time.


Match Result

Melbourne City A 1
Auckland City FC 5
MEL: Own goal 22'
AKL: Ryan De Vries 16', 40, Nicolai Berry 44', Dylan Burns 74', 75'

Match Statistics
Shots on Target: MEL 1-7 ACFC
Shots off Target: MEL 2-4 ACFC
Blocked: MEL 0-3 ACFC
Saves: MEL 2-1 ACFC
Corners: MC 6-0 ACFC
Balls in box: MC 11-5 ACFC
Fouls: MEL 9-7 ACFC
Offsides MEL 2-8 ACFC
Possession: MEL 39% ACFC 61%

Training Session
Saturday 24 September 2016
City Football Academy, Melbourne
11:00am – 12:30pm

Next Match

Pre-season friendly
Sunday 25 September 2016
Melbourne City FC v Auckland City FC
City Football Academy, Melbourne
Kick-off: 10.00am local time

Club contact
Team Manager
Colin Cook
M: 021-221-5005

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