Melbourne City's inconsistent preseason has continued with the side going down 1-0 against fellow A-League side Adelaide United in Alice Springs.
The game's only goal came after just three minutes, with Adelaide striker Sergio Cirio converting a cross from livewire winger Awer Mabil.
Given that the match was played in the Northern Territory, we have very few firsthand accounts of what unfolded, save for Melbourne City's Twitter feed and match report. As always, the club has moved to play down the result, commenting that the "score line was not necessarily indicative of the evenness of the contest, with Melbourne City enjoying a promising second half”.
That comment itself is a little (unintentionally) concerning, as City played a considerably stronger XI in the opening 45 minutes. New international recruits Robi Koren and Damien Duff played from the start, with the Irishman ultimately playing the entire game. The live commentary on the Twitter accounts of both City and Adelaide suggests that Duff created multiple chances for teammates, but none were converted. Still, that is cause for some encouragement. Koren played the first hour before being replaced by Stefan Mauk.
Also notable was that Tando Velaphi played the full 90 minutes in goal. Last year's regular keeper Andrew Redmayne is yet to start since his howler against Sydney FC, and it’s clear that the number one spot is up for grabs.
The result means City is yet to defeat an A-League opponent in the preseason, continuing a somewhat worrying trend that dates back to last year. It should be noted that Adelaide coach Josep Gombau sent out a strong line-up in Alice Springs, and the team figures to improve greatly in the impressive Spanish manager’s second season.
Melbourne City continues its preseason with a friendly against FC Bendigo in the regional Victorian city in Saturday 2nd September.
Melbourne City Lineup
Archibald (Germano 61’) Kisnorbo Wielaert Ramsay (Garuccio 83’)
Murdocca Koren (Mauk 61’) Mooy
Dugandzic (Retre 66’) Williams (Marino 71’) Duff
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