Pre-season Wrap: Wanderers defeat Spartans

Western Sydney Wanderers FC have opened their pre-season campaign with a confident 2-0 win over Blacktown Spartans.

Goals from Daniel Georgievski and Jarrod Carluccio sealed the win for the Red & Black who could have had more on the scoresheet. 

The Wanderers fielded a very young side with the exception of senior players Dylan McGowan and Daniel Georgievski.

The remainder of the starting team was filled with the likes of Wanderers Academy players Thomas Aquilina, Mo Al-Taay, Kosta Grozos and Alessandro Lopane. 

The Red & Black controlled the match from the outset and kept the Spartans at bay for majority of the first half. 

Ali Auglah and Georgievski combined well to create a number of chances, none of which immediately broke the deadlock.

Georgievski
Daniel Georgievski

Auglah was then brought down in the box and the Wanderers were given a penalty. Defender Georgievski stepped up to convert, making it 1-0.

Seconds later, Auglah then found the back of the net but was unfortunately called offisde.

The Wanderers continued to dominate and after some great work in the midfield, the play found Carluccio who then extended the lead to 2-0.

Al-Taay was the standout in the Red & Black's first-half performance, commanding the Wanderers midfield and blocking any chances by Blacktown. 

Al-Taay
Mo Al-Taay

The second half started similarly with the Wanderers playing with a high intensity, winning a free kick in a very difficult position. 

Auglah took his chances and whipped in a great ball to Dean Pelekanos whose powerful header flew wide. 

The Red & Black continued to have plenty of chances through Auglah, Lopane and Carluccio and should have had more on the scoresheet. 

15 minutes into the second half, head coach Carl Robinson emptied the bench with McGowan, Johnathan Maras and Carluccio being the only players to stay on the pitch. 

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A raft of young guns took to the field and Isaac Hovar almost had the perfect start, firing a powerful shot from distance that went wide. 

15-year-old Alex Badaloto also looked to make his mark with a quick turning movement forcing the keeper to palm it away.

Japanese midfielder Takeru Okada was consistent in creating problems for Spartans and also had a few shots on target. 

Carl Robinson
Head coach Carl Robinson speaking to some of the younger players in the squad

Substitute Patrick Ziegler and McGowan looked strong in the heart of the Wanderers defence for the remainder of the second half and made several defensive challenges. 

It was a solid start to the Wanderers pre-season campaign and Carl Robinson's men who will look to build on the performance in their next fixture. 

Starting XI: Oliver KALAC (GK), Dylan MCGOWAN, Daniel GEORGIEVSKI, Dean PELEKANOS, Nectarios TRIANTIS, Thomas AQUILINA, Mo AL-TAAY, Kosta GROZOS, Jarrod CARLUCCIO, Alessandro LOPANE and Ali AUGLAH.

Substitutes: Peter GROZOS, Lochlan CONSTABLE, Alex BADOLATO, Leo MAZIS, Takeru OKADA, Patrick ZIEGLER, Johnathan MARRAS, Isaac HOVAR and Jack WARSHAWSKY.