Words: ACFC Media
Saturday 3 July 2021
AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Northern Rovers U-23s grabbed a well deserved 1-1 draw with a lacklustre Auckland City FC U-23s at Kiwitea Street today.
Missing for the Navy Blues were skipper Brooklyn Heath, Dempsey Thomas and Kristoff Muller and their absence made a difference.
Fardeen Mohammed opened the scoring after 24 minutes before Wilson Fisher turned the ball into his own net just under ten minutes later.
Outstanding for the visitors was wide player Jed Sweetman who was a constant threat in bright sunny conditions in Sandringham.
The home side passed up a golden opportunity to win the game when Aidan Carey slipped Finn McCracken in but the Navy Blues front man hit a weak shot straight at goalkeeper Gareth Lewis.
At the other end Finn Dockerty was kept relatively busy by a Rovers side that barely resembled the one that lost 8-1 to the Navy Blues back in April.
McCracken was handed another chance late on to snatch the win after good work by Alex Smith but couldn't register the accuracy needed to beat Lewis.
Tenth-placed Rovers could've made it maximum points but for a brave last gasp save at the far post by Dockerty.
With second placed Birkenhead United U-23s at home to West Coast Rangers U-23s and Eastern Suburbs AFC U-23s hosting Bay Olympic U-23s, the Navy Blues face a nervous wait to see if their lead at the top of the table is cut further.
Lotto NRFL U-23 Premier Division
Saturday 3 July 2021
Auckland City FC U-23 1 (Fardeen MOHAMMED 24')
Northern Rovers U-23 1 (Wilson FISHER OG 33')
AC: 1. Finn DOCKERTY (GK), 2. Jesse GAGE, 4. Louie DANIELSON, 5. Anthony DUNCAN, 6. Wilson FISHER, 7. Aidan CAREY, 8. Alex SMITH, 9. Finn McCRACKEN, 11. Jeremiah RUAWHARE, 16. Riley SEXTON, 17. Fardeen MOHAMMED.
SUBS NOT USED: 24. Anthony MOODIE (GK), 13. Woodie WILSON, 14. Kairo JACOBS, 15. Marcel STODDARD.
COACH: Kris BRIGHT.
ASSISTANT COACH: Paul DRAKE.
SATURDAY 3 JULY 2021
Eastern Suburbs AFC U-23 v Bay Olympic U-23
Birkenhead United U-23 v West Coast Rangers U-23
Manukau United U-23 v Auckland United U-23
Hamilton Wanderers U-23 v Melville United U-23
North Shore United U-23 v Western Springs U-23
v Al Ahly, Tangier, Feb 1 2023, KO: 8pm local