Sydney FC’s stars shine bright but marquee man suffers injury blow
Sydney FC couldn’t have asked for a better start to life at their new home ground of the SCG on Saturday night.
A relatively comfortable 2-0 win over their fierce rivals Western Sydney Wanderers, with big guns Adam Le Fondre, Milos Ninkovic and Alex Brosque all firing.
With an FFA Cup Final against Adelaide United to come on Tuesday night, it’s been another ominous start to the season from the Sky Blues.
But Siem de Jong’s potentially serious hamstring injury was a sour note to an otherwise memorable night for Steve Corica’s side.
The Dutchman cut a forlorn figure on the touchline as he hobbled off in injury time clutching at his hamstring.
De Jong, the Sky Blues marquee signing, has had a history of injuries throughout his career so the sight of him almost in tears on the side line will be a concern for all associated with the Sky Blues.
Corica started de Jong on the bench against the Wanderers with one eye on Tuesday night’s final in Adelaide, but now it seems he could be without the classy attacker for a long period.
“We wanted to rest him for the Cup. We have three games in six days which is difficult,” Corica told Fox Sports after the match.
“We wanted to give him the opportunity to play in the Cup on Tuesday. Unfortunately it didn’t work out tonight.
“He was devastated on the bench.”
While de Jong’s absence is a blow, Sydney FC showed against the Wanderers they have class all over the pitch.
Milos Ninkovic, the Johnny Warren Medallist is Sydney FC’s double-winning campaign of 2016/17, was back to his unplayable best.
At the home of cricket in Sydney, it was a Bradman-like display from the Serbian whiz, which the majority of the 30,588 fans inside the stadium loved.
He was at the heart of all of Sydney’s dangerous attacking moves and set up Brosque’s match-sealer after the break, his second assist in as many weeks.
Ninkovic’s combination with another of Sydney FC’s shining lights in Le Fondre, looks like it could be a major weapon as the season goes on.
Much was made about what impact the loss of last season’s golden boot winner Bobo would have on the Sky Blues.
But Le Fondre, who opened the scoring inside four minutes, has now scored five goals in his last four competitive matches to look every bit a golden boot contender.
But it’s not just his goals which are impressive. The Englishman’s running off the ball is a nightmare for defenders to deal with and he’s always looking to get in behind his marker.
“Adam loves making forward runs and he is good outlet for us,” Corica said of Le Fondre.
“He has settled in well and there is not much more we can ask from him.”