Great way to bounce back after a run of losses. Full match report below courtesy of Football NSW.
This week we are away to Mt Druitt in round 16. Friday night at Popondetta Park. 7pm kick off.
An impressive hat-trick from ‘The Baker’ Alec Urosevski saw Rockdale Ilinden secure three points over the Marconi Stallions on a cold Sunday evening at Rockdale City Sports Centre.
The three goals to Urosevski cancelled out the opening goal from Marconi defender Roberto Speranza as the visitors were unable to convert their other chances to get back in the game.
The undoubted man of the match performance from Urosevski was exactly what Rockdale needed after a string of losses saw an impressive start to the National Premier Leagues Men’s season fall away.
The loss broke Marconi’s ten-game undefeated run as the Stallions face a number of away matches in the final leg of the season.
It was end-to-end football in the opening period as both sides used their attacking talent to create chances as they settled into the tempo of the game.
Urosevski had a shot in the 7th minute that could have seen him steal an early advantage but Marconi goalkeeper Nenad Vekic defended it with ease.
Marko Jesic had a chance from just outside the box for the Stallions in the 12th minute but it rebounded off the sticks.
A Rockdale deflection from a corner almost saw Marconi steal a goal in the 13th minute but Tomoki Wada cleared it off the line.
Charles Lokolingoy had the perfect opportunity to take the opening goal in the 16th minute, stealing the ball from Daniel Araujo, but as Lokolingoy took an extra touch to move the ball to his right Araujo cleared it from contention.
It was Roberto Speranza who opened the scoring in the 19th minute after plenty of movement in the box from a Domenic Costanzo free kick saw the visitors with an opportunity.
The defender missed his first chance but was able to convert his second as he used his left boot to knock home the ball after it popped up in front of him in front of the goal.
It was his third goal in successive weeks with the big defender asserting himself as a formidable goalscoring threat for the Stallions.
Rockdale were quick to retaliate, coming close through Urosevski off the restart.
The striker got on the end of a Wada long ball, but it drifted a bit too far and he sent his shot over the bar.
It was end-to-end action as Marconi counter-attacked and Jesic played the ball to Lokolingoy, but the burly striker’s shot was again cleared by Rockdale’s defence.
The hosts levelled the score in the 21st minute through Urosevski.
The striker received the ball from Peter Kekeris from a quick Rockdale counter attack and was well-positioned inside the 18-yard box with plenty of time and space as Marconi’s defensive line rushed back to try and cover.
Urosevski controlled the ball with his chest and sent a left-footed strike past Vekic and into the netting.
Chris McStay missed a sitter in the 38th minute as Will Mutch crossed the ball into him in prime position in front of goal, but his shot rocketed over the bar.
Jesic had a chance for Marconi in the 40th minute as he sent the ball towards the target, but it dribbled past and out of play.
Urosevski came close to a second in the 45th minute, but his shot flew over the target.
The striker was able to complete his brace in the 52nd minute after the hosts earned a free kick in a dangerous area.
Urosevski stepped up to take the kick and sent it low into the bottom corner, out of reach of Vekic to secure the lead for Rockdale.
He came close to a third in the 55th minute, getting on the end of a McStay cross to send a header towards the target, but it was collected by Vekic.
Urosevski took it to three in the 65th minute with a clinical finish.
Receiving the ball from Wada on a forward run, Urosevski beat the two Marconi defenders marking him and sent another left-footed strike past Vekic and into the netting to secure his hat-trick and his fourteenth goal of the 2022 NPL NSW Men’s campaign.
Marconi hit the back of the net in the 67th minute as a corner kick resulted in a scramble in the box and a toe-poke over the line from Lokolingoy, but referee Adrian Arndt called a foul on Rockdale keeper David Bradasevic, seeing the goal disallowed.
Lokolingoy maneuvered through Rockdale’s defence down the left of the field in the 76th minute and passed across to substitute Martin Fernandez.
Fernandez then played the ball to substitute Liam Youlley, who fired the ball towards the target, drawing out a brilliant save from David Bradasevic.
Although Marconi continued to create attacking opportunities, they couldn’t manage to break down a strong Rockdale back line and in an intense final period of football.
Rockdale coach Steve Zoric was pleased with his side’s effort to return to form after a rough few weeks.
“I thought we played some great football, we’re back to where we were when we were on top of the table,” he said.
“It took a bit of time for us to get the guys going again since we had a few guys off with COVID and injuries – we really struggled with that.
“It’s been a hard time but I’ve got to congratulate the boys, they have been positive throughout this time and we knew eventually we would turn it around and we were hoping that would happen today and it did.
“We’ve got to keep going on and looking onto the next one – if we don’t win next week, this doesn’t mean much, but we just got to keep going now.”
Marconi coach Peter Tsekenis was disappointed his team wasn’t able to produce their best performance in the match.
“Every time you don’t lose you’re one step closer to losing a game, it was probably a game that we had to lose,” he explained.
“We got up early in the game with a goal and just some stuff that we work on that we shouldn’t be doing, we’ve done and we got punished for it.
“They’ve got a decent player in Urosevski, who pretty much nailed every chance he got and goals change games.
“It just wasn’t our day, it wasn’t our best performance and things didn’t fall for us and you’ve just gotta take it and move on and work on things.”
Marconi Stallions FC 1 (Roberto Speranza 19’)
Rockdale Ilinden FC 3 (Urosevski 21’, 52’, 65’)
Sunday, 12th June, 2022
Rockdale Ilinden Sports Centre, Rockdale
Referee: Adrian Arndt
Assistant Referees: Joon Park and Nick Vermaat
Fourth Official: Rebecca Mackie
Rockdale Ilinden FC: 1. David Bradasevic, 2. Daniel Petkovski, 4. Mitchell Stamatellis, 5. William Mutch, 6. Daniel Araujo, 7. Alec Urosevski, 10. Tomoki Wade, 11. Peter Kekeris (9. Bai Antoniou 80’), 15. Jamie Percevski, 23. Jaden Casella, 88. Christopher McStay
Substitutes Not Used:, 16. Mohamed Ahmed, 25. Alex Masciovecchio, 31. Matthew Marrum, 39. Jason Cakovski, 47. Alexander Casella
Yellow Cards: McStay 46’
Red Cards: Nil
Marconi Stallions FC: 1. Nenad Vekic, 3. Giorgio Speranza, 4. Roberto Speranza, 6. Domenic Costanzo (17. Martin Fernandez 69’), 8. Connor Evans (16. Liam Youlley 69’, 9. Thomas James, 10. Marko Jesic, 11. Charles Lokolingoy, 13. Samuel Gulisano, 22. Taylor McDonald, 23. Brandon Vella (7. Chris Hatfield 77’)
Substitutes Not Used: 18. Adrian Valenti, 19. Zach Cairncross, 20. Dion Shaw
Yellow Cards: Vella 51’