Western Sydney Wanderers and Manly United played out in a nil-all draw in the NPL 1 on Friday night at a cold and damp Cromer Park.
It was the first time the two sides had met in the National Premier League and the first half certainly matched that uncertainty.
With neither side wanting to commit too many players forward, the first half was cagey as both sides tried to get a feel for the match and their opposition in the wild weather.
Manly United had the better of the chances hitting the left upright and going close on other occasions, but they were few and far between as the Wanderers defence stood solid.
The best chance for the Red & Black came just before half time when a corner was whipped across the face of goal, but it was tapped over the bar just six yards out by Jamie Percevski.
The Wanderers came out of the blocks quickly after the break, with Jarrod Carluccio creating a chance just minutes into the second half.
Carluccio again looked likely in the 56th minute after moving into an attacking position from right back. He received the ball on the edge of the box and cut inside only to drag his shot just wide of the post.
Manly United forced their way back into the match and went close on a couple of occasions in the 58th and 62nd minutes as they looked to gain control of the match.
The youthful Wanderers side showed a lot of fight and spirit and the game turned back in favour of the Red & Black who had the better chances late in the second half through Stefan Nikolic and Ali Auglah.
A dramatic late finish in favour of Arthur Diles’s team looked on the cards, but ultimately it wasn’t enough to steal all three points.
Manly United 0
Western Sydney Wanderers 0
Western Sydney Wanderers: 40. Oliver KALAC (GK), 2. Thomas AQUILINA, 7. Jarrod CARLUCCIO (c), 9. Duantae MARINER (12. Stefan NIKOLIC 67’), 11. Lochlan CONSTABLE (26. Alessandro LOPANE 79’), 17. Dean PALEKANOS, 19. Rory JORDAN, 21. Ali AUGLAH, 22. Paolo BONANNI, 23. Jamie PERCEVSKI, 24. Peter GROZOS
Unused Substitutes: 50. Jack GIBSON (GK), 15. Nectarios TRIANTIS, 25. Yousef SAWALHA, 28. Isaac HOVER, 30. Mason FERNANDEZ
Other NPL Results
U20: Manly United 4-0 WSW
U18: Match abandoned due to storm
U16: WSW 5-0 Sydney Olympic
U15: WSW 2-1 Sydney Olympic
U14: WSW 1-2 Sydney Olympic
U13: WSW 6-0 Sydney Olympic