Dorrans, Yeboah strike late as Wanderers break stubborn Victory
Two late goals to Graham Dorrans and Kwame Yeboah helped Western Sydney Wanderers break down a stubborn Melbourne Victory and record a 2-0 win at Bankwest Stadium on Wednesday night.
A rash challenge on Bernie Ibini from Victory substitute Rudy Gestede handed Dorrans the spot kick which put the Wanderers ahead with 20 less than minutes to play and Yeboah sealed all three points for the hosts in the 88th minute to ensure Carl Robinson's side extended their unbeaten streak to six games.
Victory needed to lift after losing 5-2 to Brisbane Roar on the weekend and the initial signs were promising as Grant Brebner's side dug in against the Wanderers, and a hotly-contested first half ensued.
Mark Natta wasted the first clear-cut chance of the opening stanza heading a Dorrans cross wide, before Birkan Kirdar lashed a long-range strike at Daniel Margush, which was comfortably tipped away.
Dorrans collected Marco Rojas with a flailing boot in the first half which sent the Victory speedster to hospital with facial lacerations; it was the third instance of spilt blood throughout the game with Victory teammates Nick Ansell and Leigh Broxham both requiring attention for facial cuts throughout the hard-fought fixture.
With scores locked at 0-0 at the hour mark Brebner turned to Gestede off his bench to probe for a winning goal. But Gestede's return to action after a three-match absence soon turned sour when the Benin international collected Wanderers substitute Ibini's face with his boot in Victory's defensive box to give the hosts a penalty.
Dorrans stepped forward and curled the spot kick past Max Crocombe to give the Wanderer the lead, giving Jake Brimmer an earful in the aftermath in a sign of the intensity brewing on the field throughout the game.
After winning his side the spot kick to go ahead Ibini went on to set up the sealing Wanderers goal, this time teeing up fellow substitute Yeboah for his first goal of the campaign.
The attacking pair set off on a counter attack in tandem and Ibini slid Yeboah in to thunder a strike under Max Crocombe and into the net to wrap up all three points for the Wanderers, whilst condemning the Victory to their fourth loss of the campaign.
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Natta found by Dorrans ball, header goes wide
A simply superb ball from Dorrans found Natta all alone in the box, but the young centre-back couldn't convert from his headed effort on goal.
Natta ghosted in between Ryan Shotton and Adama Traore as Dorrans paused on the ball on the left flank. His right-footed cross curled over Shotton's head to find Natta unmarked and his headed attempt called Crocombe into a desperate dive, but the ball bounced just wide of the left-hand upright.
Kirdar shoots from distance and Margush saves
A neat piece of interplay between three Victory players sent Kirdar past Dorrans and the teenage midfielder shot towards the top right corner, but his well-hit attempt was poked over the crossbar by Margush.
Kirdar started the move with a pass in midfield to Brimmer. Two first-time passes followed, firstly by Brimmer to Jacob Butterfield who moved the ball back onto Kirdar, setting him running past Dorrans to hit a strike which Margush did well to keep out.
Clumsy Gestede hands Dorrans the opener
Victory may have hoped Gestede would prove the hero against the Wanderers, but a clumsy challenge on Ibini in his defensive box handed the Red and Black a spot kick which gave the hosts a second-half lead.
In his athletic attempt at a clearance Gestede caught the face of Ibini with his boot, and the Wanderers forward hit the deck with his head in his hands.
Dorrans collected the ball, made his way to the penalty spot and curled his strike past Crocombe to put the Wanderers ahead.
Ibini sends Yeboah through who smashes home the sealer
It seemed Yeboah's goalless start to the 2020/21 A-League campaign would go on for another game after he missed a wide-open chance to put the Wanderers two goals to the good in the 85th minute of play.
But just minutes later Yeboah was handed another golden opportunity which the Wanderers forward took graciously, hammering a strike from Ibini's through ball under the sprawling Crocombe and into the back of the net, finishing off a ruthless Wanderers counter attack sparked by Ibini's gut-running through the middle of the park and into the attack.
Western Sydney Wanderers v Melbourne City
Saturday, February 13 2021
Venue: Bankwest Stadium
Kick-off: 7.10pm (AEDT)
Melbourne Victory v Wellington Phoenix
Wednesday, February 17 2021
Venue: AAMI Park
Kick-off. 7.05pm (AEDT)
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