Avondale FC vs Dandenong Thunder

Avondale are back on the winner’s list after an emphatic 6-2 win over Dandenong Thunder at Avenger Park on Saturday.

After a minor hiccup in the form of a 1-1 draw away at Hume the week before, the home side were looking to bounce back and maintain their lead on the top of the table.

The Azuri failed to make the most of their chances against Hume, and the pressure was on to find the back of the net against a tricky opponent.

But any fears the home fans may have had over another goal drought were washed away early. Liam Boland’s beautiful ninth-minute header found the top corner to give Avondale the early lead.

Avondale clearly weren’t content with just one goal as they pushed hard for more, and their intensity soon paid off. Stefan Zinni was fouled in the penalty area before Boland stepped up and slotted the spot kick home for his 12th goal of the season.

Despite having total control of the game, Avondale found their lead cut in half right on the half-hour mark. Dandenong’s Peter Skapetis delivered a superb free kick that curled over the wall and past a diving Chris Oldfield to bring the Thunder right back into the contest against the run of play.

The goal gave the Thunder a spark, but any comeback thoughts were quickly snuffed out when Zinni restored Avondale’s two-goal advantage. A lovely through ball from Boland put the speedster through on goal and he made no mistake, tucking his shot past the keeper.

The Avengers kept their foot on the gas after the break, Zinni pounced on a rebound from a Yusuf Ahmed shot to give his side a three-goal lead.

With the game seemingly put to bed things slowed down as both sides made their substitutions, before another goal to Dandenong livened things up again. Blake Carpenter scored from a corner and all of a sudden the visitors were full of life.

The Thunder had already come back from three goals down earlier this season – beating Dandenong City 4-3 after trailing 3-0 – and the travelling away fans were up and about as they urged their boys on to another comeback.

But once again, any thoughts of a Dandenong revival didn’t last long. Substitute Stefan Valentini netted two goals in 20 minutes to secure all three points and another thumping victory for Avondale.

The two goals conceded was only the second time Avondale have conceded more than one goal in a game this season, and after nine games the team is still yet to trail at any stage in any game.

The win maintains the Azuri’s six-point lead on top of the table over second-placed Heidelberg. Avondale will take a break from league action this Easter weekend, taking on the Mazenod Victory in the FFA cup on Saturday at 2:00pm at Avenger Park.

Article By Bransen Gibson

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