Round 3 marked the celebration of Female Football Week, with senior players sporting purple shoelaces and Avondale FC continuing to march on by heading for their best start to an NPL Victoria season.
Two wins from two saw Avondale FC climb quickly up the ladder and give the league notice about the club’s attacking quality. Round 3 saw a tough matchup in the form of Hume City FC. With a loss and a win, it was difficult to see what quality Hume City would be able to produce. The players and coaching staff knew that a game such as this would not be taken lightly. Two changes made on the night with both Jonatan Germano and Anthony Strano rested with young boys, James Alvarez and Christian Inglese moving up onto the substitutes bench from the U20s.
The intensity that Avondale was able to produce in the first 10 minutes was something that would frighten all opposition in the league. This would not be the attacking side that would be on show, but the ability of the team to pressure the opposition, forcing the mistakes and gifting the possession back to Avondale. At no point did Hume City FC have the opportunity to play any sort of football on their own terms.
The pressure was so intense led by an incredible work rate off the ball from Elvis Kamsoba, that an errant pass in the 11th minute from the Hume City defence saw Elvis have a chance to drive into the box, and with the defence backing away he was able to put it into last year’s goalkeeper of the year’s net. The brace is the first for Elvis in the Avondale blue and the club finally got to see the club’s new man gymnastic backflipping celebration.
As chances started to mount, so did the corner count for Avondale, and in the 36th minute with a perfectly weighted ball from Jimmy Riccobene, another new boy on the scoresheet was defender Ross Archibald.
The Avondale boys headed into the halftime break with a 2:0 advantage and Chris Oldfield wasn’t troubled once in the first half.
The difference in class showed again from the opening minutes of the second half, and with another perfectly timed corner from Jimmy Riccobene it was Kaine Sheppard getting to the ball from the keeper, who found himself in no man’s land which led to the open goal for the ball, and Sheppard’s 4th goal of the season.
A rare defensive error from Avondale playing out from the back saw the Hume City striker latch onto the loose ball a make a darting drive into the box, a tackle from acting captain Ramazan Tavsancioglu saw the player go down in the box and the referee awarded the penalty. Oldfield in goal managed to keep the ball out from the penalty kick, but it was a Hume City player their first on the rebound to put the ball into the back of the net and give Hume City a slim hope with the scores back to 3:1.
As Avondale tightened up the screws after the error, only minutes later it was a darting Dillon Jakupi was able to put the ball into the box for a towering header by in-form striker Liam Boland, taking the lead back out to 4:1.
With Hume City starting to wrestle back possession, in the 75th minute an easy ball into the City box was gathered by the darting striker and with quick feet, Hume City managed to pull another goal back to give the scoreline another change at 4:2
The dying minutes of the game it was none other than Joey Katebian who managed to get himself on the scoresheet, meaning after the first 3 rounds the attacking trio of Sheppard, Boland, and Katebian have each scored in every game so far.
It was a man of the match performance from Ross Archibald as a barely put a foot wrong all game and managed to get himself on the scoresheet.
With the group we’ve got, the coaching staff, players and board behind us, I think we can definitely do something special – Ross Archibald