NPL Preview: City v Geelong SC

Melbourne City will return to the friendly confines of La Trobe University this Sunday looking to put a tough May behind them when they take on NPL2 Western Conference side Geelong SC.

Despite a brave performance, City suffered defeat in their last hit out; going down 2-1 to Western Conference highflyers St Albans Saints at Churchill Reserve.

In what was an intense tussle on the tight confines of the Saints ground, City looked set to head to the dressing room at halftime with things all square against St Albans; only for the Saints Adam Hodor to strike in the 44th minute to give his side a lead.

Though Gianluca Iannucci was able to thunder a response into the top of the Saints net in the 54th minute City was unable to keep their highly fancied at bay, David Stojic putting his side permanently ahead in the game’s 78th minute.

It means that City, who have lost a number of players to injury, mandated rest periods or other clubs as well as underwent a head coaching change, has gone the entire month of May without a win; their last triumph coming back on 13 April against Eastern Lions.

On Saturday, they will have the chance to turn around that form and drag themselves up from the eighth position on the NPL2 Eastern Conference table when they are visited by the newly promoted Geelong SC.

The 2018 North/West State League One Champions, Geelong sits in the sixth slot on the NPL2 Western Conference table entering round 15, having won two and lost three of their past five fixtures.  

Geelong last week suffered defeat against Eastern Conference side Langwarrin SC, who made the long trip from Melbourne’s southeast to knock Geelong off 2-1 at Stead Park.

John Kuol put the visitors ahead in the 63rd minute of that contest, before Geelong’s Mathew Townley brought things level from the spot in the 71st.

That equilibrium was not to last, though, with Langy’s Jordan Templin putting the ball into the back of the net just seconds after Townley’s set piece to earn his side the win.

Sunday's visitorys, however, will not only be looking to bounce back from the disappointment of that defeat against Langwarrin this Sunday, but also their elimination from the FFA Cup on Wednesday evening.

Ahead 2-0 after 72 minutes at home against St Albans Saints, the visitors fired in two goals in the remaining 20 minutes to force the game into extra time before stealing it in the 105th minute through Anthony Katiforis.

Match Details:

NPL Victoria - NPL2 Round Fiftenn
Sunday, 02 June 2019
Melbourne City FC v Geelong SC 
Venue: La Trobe University (Pitch One) - Bundoora - Melbourne 
Kick-off: U20s – 12:30pm | Seniors 3:00pm