Jets claim historic Asian victory

The Newcastle Jets have claimed their first win in the AFC Champions League 2009, defeating their Korean counterparts Ulsan Hyundai Horang-i 2-0 in their match day two clash at Newcastle Stadium tonight.

The Newcastle Jets have claimed their first win in the AFC Champions League 2009, defeating their Korean counterparts Ulsan Hyundai Horang-i 2-0 in their match day two clash at Newcastle Stadium tonight.

A well taken brace by new signing Sasho Petrovski ensured Newcastle secured their first three points of the prestigious competition, much to the delight of a vociferous home crowd of 7,314.

The Jets may have recorded an even larger victory had it not been for Ulsan keeper Kim Seung Gyu, who pulled off a number of classy saves in the Tigers- goal.

The Jets started the match positively and took the lead in the 15th minute when Ben Katarovski-s cross was flicked on by Nikolai Topor-Stanley to Ljubo Milicevic, who prodded on again to Petrovski. With his left foot, Petrovski volleyed home powerfully from eight-yards and, despite Ulsan-s cries for offside, referee Masoud Moradi allowed the goal to stand.

Five minutes later and Ulsan went close to equalising. A loose pass from Kantarovski found its way to Brazilian striker Luisinho whose strong strike from range went just inches wide.

The match settled until the 35th minute when Dutchman Donny de Groot went close to extending Newcastle-s lead. A superb cross from Tarek Elrich found the powerfully built striker who would have scored if it wasn-t for the heroics of Seung Gyu.

The Jets did double their lead a few minutes before halftime however, as Petrovski netted his second of the night in clinical fashion. Meeting Italian Fabio Vignaroli-s well-flighted free kick, Petrovski nodded a textbook header over Seung Gyu to give Newcastle the perfect cushion heading into the break.

Both teams came out after halftime showing enterprise, however lacking a killer touch. Vignaroli was outstanding for the Jets, wreaking havoc amongst the Ulsan defence with his silky skills whilst midfielder You Hohun was desperately unlucky not to pull one back for the Korean visitors when his 68th minute free kick whisked past Ante Covic-s left post.

Coach Gary van Egmond decided to give Petrovski a well earned rest in the 71st minute, bringing on the returning Marko Jesic for the remaining 20 minutes of play.

Early showers were also given to fellow new boys Vignaroli and de Groot, with van Egmond deploying youngsters Brodie Mooy and Kaz Patafta late on.

The last chance of the night fell to Ulsan defender Lim Jong Eun, whose unorthodox shot was well claimed by Covic.

Van Egmond was pleased with the crucial three points at home, but believes his side will only get better as the AFC Champions League 2009 rolls on.

“It was very pleasing, obviously here in our home town and in front of our supporters, in lieu of the fact that we lost our first game it was imperative for us to win and the boys duly did so.”

“Overall the fluency and the combinations between the players is getting better and better with the more training sessions they have and obviously the games that they have together. I thought at times the front third in changing the point of the attack was quite good especially in the first half.”

“Second half, we got to a two-nil lead and we tried to protect it a little bit, probably then we-ve got to start to go a little bit higher and push out and play the game a little bit higher up the pitch,” van Egmond said.

Match Details:
Newcastle Jets: 1 Ante COVIC (GK), 2 Tarek ELRICH, 3 Adam D’APUZZO, 4 Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY, 5 Ljubo MILICEVIC, 6 Ben KANTAROVSKI, 8 Matt THOMPSON, 9 Sasho PETROVSKI (71- Marko JESIC), 10 Donny DE GROOT (87- Kaz PATAFTA), 17 Fabio VIGNAROLI (81- Brodie MOOY), 25 Adam GRIFFITHS
Unused substitutes: 12 Jobe WHEELHOUSE, 14 Angelo COSTANZO, 20 Ben KENNEDY (GK), 15 Nikolas TSATTALIOS

Yellow cards: Adam Griffiths 53-

Red cards: Nil

Ulsan Hyundai: 2 Oh CHANGSIK, 3 Kim YONGTAE, 10 Fernandes LUIS CARLOS, 14 You HOJUN, 15 Kim YOUNGSAM, 21 Kim SEUNG GYU (GK), 23 Kim DONGKYU, 24 Kim SHINWOOK, 25 Park JUN TAE, 28 Kim MINOH (37 Choi JIN SOO 67-), 36 Lim JONGEUN
Unused substitutes: 8 Lee DONGKEUN, 20 Lee SANGDON, 29 Lee YONG JOON, 31 Choi MOOLIM, 35 Kim DONG MIN

Yellow cards: Nil

Red cards: Nil

Newcastle Jets: 2 (Petrovski 15-/43-)
Ulsan Hyundai: 0
Crowd: 7,314
Referee: Masoud Moradi