Jets down Gold Coast in thriller

The Newcastle Jets have put their Hyundai A-League campaign back on track with a confidence-boosting 3-2 win over Gold Coast United at Ausgrid Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

The Newcastle Jets have put their Hyundai A-League campaign back on track with a confidence-boosting 3-2 win over Gold Coast United at Ausgrid Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

The Gold Coast started better but the Jets wrestled back control of the match via veteran striker Michael Bridges, who orchestrated the Newcastle attack and the home side grabbed the lead through a Jeremy Brockie header just two minutes before half-time.

A second from Brockie gave Newcastle a 2-0 lead in the 64th minute before Gold Coast launched a spirited comeback with goals to Halloran and Traore to make it 2-2 with less than 15 minutes left to play.

But a textbook finish from substitute striker Labinot Haliti in the 79th minute handed Newcastle their first victory in a month.

The win lifts the Jets into sixth place on the Hyundai A-League ladder on 17 points with the rest of the round to play while the Gold Coast remain at the foot of the table, but still in touch on 13 points.

A thunderstorm just before the match ensured humid and greasy conditions and it was the visitors who almost scored in the first minute of the contest.

Jonas Salley pounced on a loose ball from the Jets midfield and slid the ball out to Chris Harold on the right. He took play into the penalty area before lobbing a ball into the box where Ben Halloran saw his header beat Ben Kennedy only to bounce off the far post.

The home side slowly worked their way into the match and they had their first shot on goal in the 25th minute after a swift counter attack that eventuated in Brockie taking the ball into the area before reeling off a crisp left-foot shot that was dived on by United goalkeeper Jerrad Tyson.

Both sides had chances on the half-hour mark. A great ball from Bridges put Griffiths away down the left wing. He squared to Brockie in the box but the ball was cut out by United defender Kristian Rees.

United turned defence into attack swiftly moving the ball down the park where midfielder Paul Beekmans fired a shot right into the gloves of Kennedy.

The Jets started to get on top in the final 15 minutes of the first half with Bridges controlling play in the centre of the park and he was involved in the play that led to Newcastle-s opening goal in the 43rd minute.

The former England Under 21 international played a lovely one-two with Nikolai Topor-Stanley to put the defender away down the left wing. He took play to the byline before sending a beautiful cross into the box where an unmarked Brockie headed home inside the near post for the Jets to take a 1-0 lead into half-time.

The Jets continued to press in attack to start the second half and some enterprising play from Bridges and Brockie created a chance for Griffiths in the 50th minute but Tyson did well to swallow up the shot from 15 yards.

Down the other end Halloran, who United-s best player, created a couple of chances, the best in the 55th minute when he pinched the ball from Topor-Stanley only to see his shot stopped by Kennedy.

The Jets doubled their advantage just after the hour mark when Brockie picked up his second for the match and his sixth for the season. The Kiwi international brought down a lob into the box from Griffiths before twisting past Michael Thwaite and sliding the ball into the far corner for a 2-0 lead.

United looked to hit back and almost created a goal after a fine run from Thwaite who took the ball to the edge of the area before sliding a pass to Beekmans who passed off the Righters who saw his shot well saved by Kennedy.

The Gold Coast made it 2-1 when Halloran grabbed one back for the visitors in the 72nd minute with a lovely first-time strike from 18 yards out following a looping cross into the box from Jungschlager.

It was all-square just a few minutes later when Rigters put the ball on a plate for Adam Traore, who fired a skidding shot from an acute angle that beat Kennedy and bounced off the far post and into the net to make it 2-2.

The Jets regained the lead within a minute with a lovely flowing play that saw Griffiths float a ball into the box where it was met with an exquisite first time strike from substitute striker Labinot Haliti who fired the ball into the back of the net for a 3-2 lead with 11 minutes left to play.

The visitors pressed hard for a late equaliser with Righters and substitute Golgol Mebrahtu having chances on gaol only to be thwarted by desperate scrambling defence from the Jets, who held on for a desperate victory.

Newcastle Jets 3 (Brockie 43, 64 Haliti 79) Gold Coast United 2 (Halloran 72, Traore 78)