Round 8 – Adelaide City vs Fulham United match report by Chloe Lau
Adelaide City ran amuck with a 7-0 win in their second meeting against Fulham United last night, in Round 8 of the WNPL at VALO Football Centre.
While there were key personnel missing in Tiarn Powell (flu) and Georgia Campagnale (injury), it was still a dominant performance by the Black and Whites. Yuka Sasaki scored four goals – bagging her hattrick within the first half; while Chelsie Dawber (brace) and Daniela Di Bartolo also made their way onto the score sheet.
Sasaki opened her scoring account for the night just four minutes into the game, when she hit a sensational first-time volley past Fulham’s goalkeeper Matilda Comley after a pinpoint cross from the right wing by Isobel Dahlen-Flight.
She made it two from two mere moments later, chipping it over the goalkeeper from close range and into the back of the net.
The game settled down a little after that. City saw more of the possession and chances; however, Fulham also had their opportunities to push City’s defence around when they broke away on the counter.
Sasaki completed her first-half hattrick in the 37th minute, when she poked the ball past Comley’s outreached arms during a scramble in the box.
Three minutes later, Chelsie Dawber put a goal next to her name after an athletic display to loop Di Bartolo’s cross over the keeper and into goal, which ensured that City head into the sheds at half-time with a commanding lead over Fulham.
Fulham almost had their chance to equalise in the start of the second-half, when Jenna McCormick pulled the trigger from distance, but her attempt flew just wide of the far post.
Sasaki found the back of the net once again for her last goal of the night in the 52nd minute. She caught the ‘keeper off her line and struck a fiery shot past her into the top right corner.
That wasn’t enough for Sasaki though, as she almost claimed her fifth with a chipping goal – unfortunately Comley tipped her shot over the bar.
Dawber netted her second goal in the 68th minute, when she got to the end of a well-weighted through-ball from Dylan Holmes, drew Fulham’s goalkeeper off her line and drove the ball into the bottom left corner.
Di Bartolo had the last say of the night when she finally got onto the scoreboard in the 77th minute – she side-stepped her defender and easily sent the ball into the back of the net.
Head coach Andrew Calderbank commented on the team’s performance post-match:
“Performance-wise, that’s the best we’ve played [this season]. Everything that we’ve been working on is now starting to build.”
“And when you look at no Tiarn Powell or [Georgia] Campagnale [for tonight], we’ve just got depth that we can call upon.”
“We reiterated just then in the change room, that individuals can win football games, out of sheer brilliance. But for us, there are 10 other people on the pitch that get it to that.”
“Our football is just growing, and the depth in our football club is alarming to others.”
“The girls are phenomenal, and we’re only hitting and getting stronger each week. So I couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Adelaide City 7 (Y. Sasaki 4’ 5’ 37’ 52’, Dawber 40’ 68’, Di Bartolo 77’)
Fulham United 0
Lineup: 1. Kendall Jenner (GK), 2. Alicia Nickolas (59’ Daphne McLeod), 3, Matilda McNamara, 4. Daniela Di Bartolo, 5. Alyce Macauley, 8. Dylan Holmes (72’ Nicole Robertson) , 10. Chelsie Dawber, 13. Alison Atkins, 16. Isobel Dahlen-Flight (61’ Bianca Gray), 33. Nanako Sasaki, 40. Yuka Sasaki
Unused subs: 6. Nora Peat, 50. Abbey Lucas (GK)