Victory Youth down Mariners

Defender Matthew Kemp completed a successful return from his knee injury at youth-league level as Melbourne Victory snared a 2-1 win over Central Coast Mariners Youth at John Cain Memorial Park on Sunday.

Defender Matthew Kemp completed a successful return from his knee injury at youth-league level as Melbourne Victory snared a 2-1 win over Central Coast Mariners Youth at John Cain Memorial Park on Sunday.

Kemp, making his first start since rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament in February, returned to the Victory fold just a day after Archie Thompson had comeback from the same injury for the senior side at Etihad Stadium.

He was untroubled as he played out the first 45 minutes in a match Victory worked hard to win.

Geoff Kellaway's 39th-minute strike cancelled out Nicholas Fitzgerald's opener for the Mariners before Matthew Foschini sealed the three points on 68 minutes when he reacted fastest to Leigh Broxham's cross.

Marvin Angulo got better as the game wore on and controlled the midfield tempo for much of the second half as Victory got the better of the Mariners.

Central Coast took the lead with virtually the first real play of the day.

Victory's Kellaway gave the ball away after a marauding run and when Bernie Ibini-Isei streaked down the right for Central Coast to cut back for Fitzgerald in the sixth minute, he tucked home with ease

Broxham, one of four overage players for Melbourne, surged forward but screwed his shot wide of the near post with Victory's first real chance of the match after 13 minutes.

The Mariners were utilising 18-year-old Ibini-Isei's pace down the right, he was in everything early, exposing left back Luke Pilkington on numerous occassions to get crosses in from dangerous positions.

Mitchell Mallia was similarly effective on the left for the Mariners, with his pace and drive troubling the returning Kemp.

And while Victory had pace and experience down the right flank with Kellaway and Kemp they were still struggling to find any real coherence.

After wasting a number of good opportunities to pass, Kellaway was released again, this time in acres of space. He opted to go himself and cut back inside to lash Victory level in the 39th minute with a fierce left-foot shot that beat Mariners' 'keeper David Bradasevic all ends up.

Overage players Broxham and particularly Marvin Angulo were beginning to influence the match and with that Victory assumed the ascendency.

Kemp made way at half-time for Paulo Retre but Melbourne continued to build on their momentum.

Kellaway's glancing touch from a corner was cleared off the line at the far post on 55 minutes but when Broxham delivered for Foschini on 68 minutes, he turned home the ball to put Victory ahead 2-1.

Max Glanville had a golden chance to level proceedings moments later after some neat play from Trent Sainsbury, but he took too long to pull the trigger.

Things got a little willing when Mariners' substitute Adam Ormsby seemingly lost his cool with a couple of dangerous tackles flying in, but he was soon replaced by Mallia, who returned to the field just after a short scuffled threatened to escalate.

On 87 minutes Kellaway seemed to have wrapped it up at 3-1 with a tap in but he was called back for offside. The Mariners broke immediately through Griffin as Victory were still celebrating, but he scuffed his shot straight at the 'keeper with the goal beckoning.

Melbourne Victory: 2 (Kellaway 39, Foschini 68) Central Coast Mariners: 1 (Fitzgerald 6) @ John Cain Memorial Park