The Newcastle Jets were left stunned at McDonald Jones Stadium last weekend, as a late winner from Elise Thorsnes condemned Craig Deans’ side to their second consecutive defeat of the season, despite two Tara Andrews goals from the spot.
The Jets started slowly under the shadow of another storm delay, dropping two behind off the back from Canberra’s opener in the 29th minute through Ashlie Crofts, and Simone Charley’s sizzling addition just three minutes later.
The home side managed to pinch back the draw-score at half time, however, after Andrews netted a brace of penalties ahead of the whistle.
The first came in the 40th minute, when Nicki Flannery was tugged down inside the box. It was originally awarded as a free-kick by the officials, before a review of the replay on the big screen revealed Flannery had been inside the 18-yard box.
Although, not for long. Newcastle were awarded a penalty in the 40th minute after Nicki Flannery was brought down inside the box – originally awarded a free-kick, the referee changed her decision once she’d reviewed the evidence on the big screen.
Andrews’ second came on the stroke of half-time, after fellow forward Jenna Kingsley was hauled down Karly Roestbakken. Newcastle drew level off the chance.
Deans’ outfit looked renewed in the second half after the leveller, with Flannery nearly finding the go-ahead goal with two close headers, and Andrews just denied the hat-trick from a whizzing free-kick.
Unfortunately for the determined Jets, Thorsnes was the one to find the breakthrough at McDonald Jones, breaking in behind Newcastle’s defence to poke the ball past Clare Coelho, and deny the home side the chance to bag points in front of the fans.
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United’s 3-2 victory, which snapped a 741-day drought on the road for the club from the capital, damned the Jets to a third winless weekend in their W-League season, and leaves them five points adrift of Canberra, who move to fourth.
The one-goal defeat doesn’t exactly fire the Jets into panic stations yet, but with just 11 more games left in the 2018/19 campaign, and a five-point gap between themselves and the top four spots, points are becoming a necessity for the team.
Their next chance comes against Perth Glory on the west coast. Glory, who have lost both their games so far this season, and scored just a single goal against five the other way, present a good chance for the Jets to take flight.
Last time the two clubs faced off, in round 11 last season, the ladies triumphed with a dominant 3-1 victory over the western club at No.2 Sportsground. The Hunter side will be hoping for a similar result on the road to bag three points.
Newcastle’s fourth-round game against the Glory will be played at Dorrien Gardens, with kickoff set for 10.15pm on Saturday, December 7.