Joyce impressed by Melbourne City's 'tremendous' spirit

Melbourne City coach Warren Joyce praised the character his side displayed in coming from behind to edge an in-form Newcastle Jets 2-1 on Saturday night.

Manny Muscat struck an 86th minute thunderbolt to secure three points at McDonald Jones Stadium after the visitors earlier appeared destined for a fourth defeat in five matches.

Newcastle were comfortably the better side over the opening half-hour and deservedly led through Andrew Nabbout, but Ross McCormack’s penalty set the platform for a much-improved second half.

“I thought we showed a tremendous amount of spirit to drive the game and I thought we thoroughly deserved the result,” Joyce said after the match.

“We thought we could hurt them in certain areas and we got our rewards from that later in the game.

“I think the attitude has been first class all the way through the season. I could never complain about that, even in the games we lost.”

Dean Bouzanis
Dean Bouzanis celebrates Manny Muscat's winner.

Joyce also lauded the performance of Dean Bouzanis, who stepped in after Eugene Galekovic hurt his back in the warm-up and kept his team in the game with a string of early saves.

“I thought he was magnificent,” the City boss said of Bouzanis.

“It’s not easy for anyone to come in at short notice like that.

“Every credit to him for the way he has conducted himself fitness-wise, in training, to give himself a chance to put in a performance like that.”