Jets upset Victory in goalfest

A Matt Thompson hat-trick has helped the Newcastle Jets to a 4-2 upset win over the Melbourne Victory in their round 16 Hyundai A-League clash at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Friday night.

A Matt Thompson hat-trick has helped the Newcastle Jets to a 4-2 upset win over the Melbourne Victory in their round 16 Hyundai A-League clash at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Friday night.

The last-placed Jets played the brand of football that took them to the Championship last season with skilful play in the midfield and a ruthless display in front of goal while the Victory played well in patches but seemed somewhat underdone as the slumped to their third straight loss.

Thompson picked up two goals in the first half to give the Jets a 2-0 lead at the break before adding another in the 49th minute. Korean import Jin-Hyung Song made it 4-0 to the home side before Danny Allsopp and Ney Fabiano collected late goals to make the scoreline more respectable.

But the night belonged to the Jets, who picked up their third win of the season to climb to 15 points and just seven outside the top four with two matches left to play in the weekend-s round while Melbourne fall to third behind Queensland on goal difference.

“It is always nice to get one for me, but to get three tonight was unreal but the best thing was getting the three points, it was much needed,” said a jubilant Matt Thompson after the match.

“We do (think we can make the finals) but we are just looking at each game week in, week out and see if other results go our way.”

The Victory had all the early running and created a number of chances. Archie Thompson found the back of the net in the ninth minute only to pulled back for a marginal offside call while Allsopp shot wide after being gifted a clear shot from the edge of the area.

The Jets managed to work their way into the match. Some enterprising play from Marko Jesic and Joel Griffiths created an opportunity for Jin-Hyung Song on the edge of the area but the Victory defence managed to diffuse the situation. But the home side took the lead moments later.

Adam D-Apuzzo chested down a miscued clearance from Victory goalkeeper Michael Theoklitos before finding Jesic on the left flank. His pin-point cross found an unmarked Thompson, whose spectacular diving header cannoned through Theoklitos- grasp and into the back of the net.

Jesic almost doubled the advantage moments later when he headed a Song corner goalward only for Theoklitos to produce a great diving save. Matt Thompson then shot wide from an acute angle as the Jets continued to attack.

The Victory started to find some space down the right-hand side with Michael Thwaite and Nick Ward sending in some good crosses. Archie Thompson headed just wide before Newcastle custodian Ante Covic produced a vital fingertip save after a flick-on header from Allsopp.

Matt Thompson went close to his second in the 44th minute when he headed another fine Jesic cross narrowly wide. But the midfielder made no mistake moments later when Jesic-s cross was deflected by Thwaite into the path of Thompson who guided the ball into the net with his left foot to hand Newcastle a deserved 2-0 lead at half-time.

The Jets picked up where they left off going onto the attack from the whistle and camping down in the Victory half. The pressure eventually told in the 49th minute with midfielder Ben Kantarovski sliding a sublime through ball for Matt Thompson to slot home his third goal of the evening.

The Jets had their fourth on the hour mark when Song found some space in the midfield before threading a ball for Joel Griffiths, who took the ball to the byline before squaring it back for Song to poke his first ever A-League goal.

Melbourne got one back in the 66th minute when Carlos Hernadez fired a long-ball for Allsopp, who collected and turned on the edge of the box before stroking the ball past an outstretched Covic and into the corner of the net.

Jesic headed narrowly over the bar while Victory substitute Ney Fabiano should have scored when he headed wide with the goal at his mercy.

The Brazilian import did collect a goal three minutes from full-time when he piloted a quickly taken Kevin Muscat free-kick from the edge of the area past Covic to make it 4-2.

“The difference between the teams was Matt Thompson,” said Victory coach Ernie Merrick after the match.

“He got three chances in the box and that third one almost killed us off but when you conceded goals like that and we haven-t done it all year, all I can ask of the boys is to work really hard to salvage some pride and they did that and worked really hard to the end of the game.”

Newcastle Jets 4 (Matt Thompson 16-, 45+1-, 49-, Song 60)

Melbourne Victory 2 (Allsopp 66-, Ney Fabiano 87-)

Crowd 6268 at EnergyAustralia Stadium