The Western Sydney Wanderers were moments away from one of the best comebacks of the season but a last minute lapse of concentration meant the Red & Black went home disappointed after a 3-3 draw with Macarthur Rams.
Having gone into the sheds 2-0 down at half time, the Wanderers fought their way back to take the lead through Lachlan Scott and Mario Shabow until Rams equalised with essentially the final kick of the match.
Playing on the new synthetic pitch at Lynwood Park, the top-of-the-table Wanderers were looking to maintain first place in the promotion race as they took on a Rams outfit in mid-table.
Starting the match well, the Wanderers held the majority of possession early but with Macarthur playing with a deep backline of five defenders, the youngsters from Western Sydney couldn’t fashion a decent chance.
While half chances fell to Lachlan Roberts and Kyle Cimenti, the first real chance of the match fell to Rams in the 21st minute as they scored off a set piece with an impressive volley.
The defensive and counter-attacking Rams were frustrating the Wanderers and they doubled their lead late in the half as Roberts put the ball into his own net following another set piece.
At the break, Wanderers coach Trevor Morgan brought on his danger players: Lachlan Scott and Mario Shabow and they had an immediate impact.
The move allowed Liam Youlley to sit deep and it was his pass that helped Scott score his eighth goal of the campaign with his first touch of the game.
Chances were now falling fast for the Red & Black and they equalised soon after as Youlley fed the ball to Shabow who curled in a wonderful goal from outside of the box.
From there it looked like there was only going to be one winner and when Scott scored his second goal off an impressive Mathieu Cordier cross it looked like the Wanderers were going to claim all three points.
Ultimately though it was not to be as the Wanderers lost possession in the final minute before a defensive error allowed the Rams to curl a long-range effort into goal to cue celebrations amongst the home team.
The 3-3 draw means that the Wanderers drop to third place, two points behind the leaders. Next up for the Wanderers is Bankstown Berries at Popondetta Park. Kick-off is 7pm on Sunday.
Macarthur Rams 3
Western Sydney Wanderers 3 (Lachlan Scott 47’ 72’ Mario Shabow 67’)
Western Sydney Wanderers: Matthew Symes, Lachlan Roberts (Mario Shabow 46’), Daniel Alessi (Jackson Bandiera 62’), Shayne D'Cunha, Mathieu Cordier, Keanu Baccus, Cameron Devlin, Liam Youlley, Tariq Maia, Joshua Macdonald, Kyle Cimenti (Lachlan Scott 46’)
Unused subs: Nicholas Suman, Brenton Fox
U20s: WSW 3-0 Rams (Michael Trajkovski x2, Ramy Najjarine)
U18s: WSW 9-0 Rams (Peter Kekeris x3, Oliver Wiggin x2, Alex Gollan, Joshua Bartolotto, Moudi Najjar, Oliver Puflett)
U16s: WSW 1-0 Blacktown Spartans (Alex Lopez)
U15s: WSW 3-1 Blacktown Spartans (Noah Botic, Adrian Neoklis, Yinka Sunmola)
U14s: WSW 3-0 Blacktown Spartans (Ali Auglah x2, James Nikolovski)
U13s: WSW 1-0 Blacktown Spartans (Israel Ekundayo)