Words: ACFC Media
Sunday 11 February 2018
NAPIER, New Zealand - Auckland City FC stay top of the ISPS Handa Premiership after a 3-0 away win at Hawke's Bay United today.
First half goals by Alfie Rogers and Micah Lea'alafa set the Navy Blues on their way towards victory inside the first half hour before youngster Callum McCowatt chimed in with a third just after the restart.
New signing Cole Peverley made his second debut for the Navy Blues when he came on as a second half substitute in his second spell for the Kiwitea Street club.
Coach Ramon Tribulietx was delighted with the result.
“We are pleased with a 3-0 win, especially with the way we played as we dominated from start to finish,” said Tribulietx after the game. “It is another game where we have finished with another clean sheet which is great because we are not giving the opposition opportunities to score.”
The cleansheet was Auckland City FC's fifth in succession and gives goalkeeper Enaut Zubikarai the distinction of having kept the ball out of his net for a staggering 470 minutes.
The last player to score past Zubikarai was Southern United's Ben Wade who bagged a 70th goal in their 1-1 draw with Auckland City FC on 13 January 2018 at Kiwitea Street.
The last team to keep five consecutive cleansheets in the ISPS Handa Premiership was the Waitakere United side of 2007-08 who defeated Hawke's Bay United (5-0 and 1-0), Waikato FC (1-0), Canterbury United (1-0) and Auckland City FC (1-0) en route to the minor and grand final titles.
Auckland City FC has now conceded just three goals in its last seven ISPS Handa Premiership matches.
The win keeps Auckland City FC one point ahead of Team Wellington who defeated Southern United 3-1 in Dunedin and two in front of Eastern Suburbs AFC who turned over Tasman United 3-0 in rainswept conditions at Bill McKinlay Park.
Canterbury United's push for the top four continued after they staged a come-from-behind 5-3 win over Wellington Phoenix to open up a six point gap between themselves and Tasman United.
The Navy Blues next match is away to Tasman United on 17 February in Nelson at 2pm.
ISPS Handa Premiership
Sunday 11 February 2018
Hawke's Bay United 0
Auckland City FC 3 (Alfie Rogers 23', Micah Lea'alafa 29', Callum McCowatt 52')
ISPS Handa Premiership Minor Title Run-in
1. Auckland City FC
Played 15, Points 31 (Goal Difference +25)
24.01.18 v Eastern Suburbs AFC (A) won 2-0
28.01.18 v Hamilton Wanderers (A) won 1-0
04.02.18 v Team Wellington (H) drew 0-0
11.02.18 v Hawke's Bay United (A) won 3-0
25.02.18 v Tasman United (A)
11.03.18 v Eastern Suburbs AFC (H)
17.03.18 v Wellington Phoenix (A)
2. Team Wellington
Played 15, Points 30 (Goal Difference +15)
27.01.18 v Tasman United (A) won 4-1
04.02.18 v Auckland City FC (A) drew 0-0
11.02.18 v Southern United (A) won 3-1
18.02.18 v Waitakere United (H)
11.03.18 v Canterbury United (A)
18.03.18 v Hamilton Wanderers (H)
3. Eastern Suburbs AFC
Played 15, Points 29 (Goal Difference +14)
24.01.18 v Auckland City FC (H) lost 0-2
28.01.18 v Hawke's Bay United (A) lost 0-2
04.02.18 v Wellington Phoenix (A) won 7-1
11.02.18 v Tasman United (H) won 3-0
04.03.18 v Waitakere United (H)
11.03.18 v Auckland City FC (A)
17.03.18 v Canterbury United (H)
4. Canterbury United
Played 14, Points 26 (Goal Difference +12)
28.01.18 v Wellington Phoenix (H) won 3-2
04.02.18 v Southern United (H) won 2-1
10.02.18 v Wellington Phoenix (A) won 5-3
18.02.18 v Hamilton Wanderers (A)
25.02.18 v Hawke's Bay United (A)
11.03.18 v Team Wellington (H)
17.03.18 v Eastern Suburbs AFC (A)
5. Tasman United
Played 15, Points 20 (Goal Difference -3)
27.01.18 v Team Wellington (H) lost 1-4
04.02.18 v Hawke's Bay United (H) won 5-2
11.02.18 v Eastern Suburbs AFC (A) lost 0-3
25.02.18 v Auckland City FC (H)
11.03.18 v Wellington Phoenix (A)
18.03.18 v Waitakere United (A)
28 February 2018, Trusts Arena, kickoff: 4pm NZST