Words: ACFC Media
Sunday 13 January 2019
AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Ramon Tribulietx was a relieved man as the Navy Blues overcame a well-organised Southern United 2-1 at Kiwitea Street today.
Auckland City FC's extended it's unbeaten run against Southern United to 27 matches following the victory that re-established the five point buffer between themselves and Eastern Suburbs.
"We know how tough Southern United can be and today they sat very deep and they try to prevent balls in between the lines and they do it very well.
"The pitch wasn't in the best condition and that didn't help the way we play but I thought we were better in the first half than second half.
"Southern had one counter attack and scored and we had three or four chances that were very clear, including the double save by Liam Little, but that's how football can be sometimes.
"We spoke at halftime about personality, that sometimes these situations can happen in football, you have to soak it up and try again.
"Today wasn't our best performance on the ball in very hot conditions but we created two more chances and scored goals from deflections. I'm happy with the way the team played with the ball in patches and we'll focus on the things we need to do better," he said.
MATCH HIGHLIGHTS - Auckland City FC v Southern United— Auckland City FC (@AucklandCity_FC) January 13, 2019
Catch the highlights of today's #ISPSHandaPrem clash between the #NavyBlues and Southern United on ACFC TV from tomorrow on all club media platforms.
On Enaut Zubikarai, Tribulietx was fulsome in his praise for the goalkeeper who made a series of breathtaking saves.
"The save Enaut made just after we went 1-0 behind was very important and they say that the two most important positions in the team are striker and goalkeeper. Everyone is important but you need someone to do their job in both boxes and today Enaut did that," he said.
Fabrizio Tavano marked his return to football with a valuable free-kick, albeit courtesy of a significant deflection off the Southern United wall. Tribulietx said it was pleasing to see the midfielder enjoying his football again after a lengthy suspension.
"Fabrizio is an important player for us and for the way we play. His passing completion is very good and his continuity is excellent and how he manages the ball in very tight spaces for our style.
"We played very well without Fabrizio during his spell on the sidelines but now he's back he's a good asset to have. He's missed a lot of games but for what is coming up in the second half of the season it's important for him to play as often as possible."
ISPS Handa Premiership
Sunday 13 January 2019
Auckland City FC 2 (Own Goal 58', Fabrizio TAVANO 65')
Southern United 1 (Garbhan COUGHLAN 39')
AC: 1. Enaut ZUBIKARAI (GK), 4. Mario BILEN, 5. Angel BERLANGA (c), 7. Cam HOWIESON, 9. Javier LOPEZ (12. Dylan MANICKUM 71'), 10. Micah LEA'ALAFA, 11. Fabrizio TAVANO, 14. Jordan VALE, 15. Dan MORGAN, 17. Reid DRAKE (6. Brian KALTAK 66'), 19. David BROWNE.
SUBS NOT USED: 18. Ruben PARKER (GK), 16. Yousif ALI, 23. Alfie ROGERS.
COACH: Ramon TRIBULIETX.
Sunday 4 December 2022, Wellington Olympic, Mount Smart Stadium