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Wanderers still without a win

January 07, 2015 09:10:06 UK

Gui Finkler scored Victory’s winning goal against the Wanderers.

Western Sydney Wanderers ended their goal drought after 475 minutes, but it was not enough as they lost 2-1 at home to Melbourne Victory.

Gui Finkler’s goal with 10 minutes left at Pirtek Stadium sentenced Wanderers to their eighth defeat of the season as they remain winless after 12 rounds.

No-one could have predicted, after Tony Popovic’s side reached the Grand Final in the last two seasons and won the Asian Champions League in November, that they would be propping up the table as the A-League goes into the Asian Cup break.

Nick Kalmar, who scored Western Sydney’s goal 10 minutes into the second half, insisted that the team’s confidence remained high despite sitting 12 points adrift of the Finals Series places. Wanderers are 4.75 to finish in the top six.

And again they were competitive, having 16 shots in the match but only three on target. When they did prove accurate, Nathan Coe made a couple of outstanding saves for Victory, who are 4.00 to win the Grand Final.

The home side twice came close to snatching a point late on. First Shannon Cole’s deflected cross gave Labinot Haliti a chance that was blocked by Nick Ansell, then substitute Steve Kuzmanovski’s powerful shot was turned away by Coe.

Victory, who moved back into third spot with the win, showed Wanderers how to find the net with two quality strikes.

Socceroos midfielder Carl Valeri gave the visitors the lead midway through the first half, lashing home a volley past Ante Covic after Finkler’s corner was headed out by Mark Bridge.

The winner came from a counter-attack involving Fahid Ben Khalfallah, Kosta Barbarouses and then Besart Berisha. The Albanian found his path to goal blocked and laid the ball off to Finkler to fire into the roof of the net.

Kalmar was twice involved in Western Sydney’s equaliser, as he first fed Nikita Rukavytsya then took a return pass and found the bottom corner of the net past Coe.

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