NPL Preview: City v Murray United

Melbourne City FC’s NPL Seniors and U20 side will be looking to extend their unbeaten start to the season when they host Murray United FC at La Trobe University on Saturday afternoon.

Both the Seniors and U20’s defeated Langwarrin Soccer Club at Lawton Park Reserve in Round 1.

Led by Head Coach, Petr Kratky, the U20’s set the tone early on Saturday afternoon, hammering Langwarrin 10-1 to see them sit top of the league ladder after the opening round.  

Following the U20s emphatic victory, Head Coach Joe Palatsides’ side looked to extend the perfect record for the visitors. Fresh off their Foxtel Y-League season, City looked sharp from the get-go.

After 17 minutes, City took the lead as Moudi Najjar’s threatening low cross was turned into the back of the net by Langwarrin’s Madafferi, leaving shot-stopper Fraser Maclaren with no chance.

The hosts closed out the half strongly, but City stood tall to take a 1-0 lead into the halftime break.

In the 56th minute City doubled their lead through Ramy Najjarine. Najjar was again involved, forcing a decent diving save out of Maclaren, before Najjarine made no mistake from the rebound.

With just over 10 minutes of regulation time to play, the hosts clawed their way back into the match. Stirton pulled a goal back in the 79th minute, before his 95th minute penalty drew the hosts level.

City needed a late hero if they were any hope of restoring the lead, and up stepped Najjarine. Gianluca Iannucci’s dangerous cross was tipped away by Maclaren, before Najjarine pounced with a clinical finish to snatch the points in the 97th minute.

The NPL Seniors will now host Murray United FC, who suffered a 4-0 loss to Eastern Lions SC in Round 1.

Murray United were dealt an early blow at La Trobe University (Albury-Wodonga) when Neales converted a penalty in the 14th minute. Eastern Lions then finished the game strongly, as Droutsas, Toumanidis and Losty all scored in the second-half to secure the points.

Murray United’s U20s defeated Eastern Lions SC 3-0 in Round 1, setting up an intriguing battle between two undefeated teams when they travel to Bundoora to take on City's U20s on Saturday afternoon.

Match Details:

NPL Victoria – NPL2 Round 2

Saturday 23 February 2019

Melbourne City FC v Murray United FC

Venue: La Trobe University, Bundoora – Pitch 1

Kick-off: U20s – 12:30pm | Seniors – 3:00pm