Adelaide City continued their perfect start to the WNPL season with a tight 1-0 win over West Adelaide at Adelaide City Park on Saturday.
By Michael Barbaro
A late penalty from Dylan Holmes ensured Mick Hatzipanagiotis’ continued his 100% record on the City bench, with three wins coming from his first three games in charge of the team.
It was a frantic start to the match by City, who almost went 1-0 up inside two minutes after Daniela Di Bartolo’s ball found Holmes on the edge of the 18-yard-box.
Five minutes later, Di Bartolo had a penalty shout waved away.
The left-winger got onto the end of a through ball from Holmes and rocketed into the penalty area before being shoved down by Elena Psaroulis.
Referee Daniel Bryant called play-on, as the City faithful seemed hard done by.
Holmes fired a shot past West Adelaide goalkeeper Sarah Willacy, however the ball struck the crossbar.
Alicia Nickolas and Di Bartolo had great synergy along the left flank, with the former’s overlapping runs causing constant problems for West Adelaide’s defence.
City continued to dominate the match, yet couldn’t find that elusive goal as the teams went into the half time break locked at 0-0.
It was a more balanced second half, as each team alternated great spells of possession early on.
However, West Adelaide had the first major chance of the half, forcing a great save out of Zafiro Papanikitas.
Georgia Macri went through on goal along the right wing and continued dribbling into the penalty area before unleashing a shot which was saved by the fantastic outstretched palm of Papanikitas.
It was an evenly-balanced match, but it was City who finally broke the deadlock in the 77th minute through Holmes.
Georgia Campagnale played a fantastic ball out wide to Nickolas and the left-back whipped in a low cross leading to Di Bartolo getting pulled down by Georgia Bailey.
The West Adelaide player picked up a caution for the foul before Holmes stepped up to the task.
She made no mistake, smashing her penalty into the right corner of the net past a diving Willacy.
It proved to be enough for City, who held on until the final whistle for a fantastic 1-0 win, and ensuring that the women’s The Real Adelaide Derby trophy would remain at Adelaide City for the time being.
Holmes capped off a great game by picking up the Arkaba Hotel Adelaide City Fan’s Women’s Player of the Match.
Next up Adelaide City WNPL 1st Grade take on Adelaide University 8:00pm Friday 23 March at Valo Football Centre