Sydney Olympic and Sutherland Sharks draw after late penalty drama

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Report by Tobias Canning

Sydney Olympic and the Sutherland Sharks left Belmore Sports Ground with a flurry of late goals and shared the spoils in what was a gripping 1-1 draw on a chilly Saturday, June 15.

Teng Kuol scored what appeared to be an electric winner in the 79th minute for Olympic, however, come the 90+7th minute a spot kick was called, and former Olympic player Mitchell Stamatellis sent Noah James the wrong way to rescue a precious point for the Shire based club.

In what was an extremely one-sided first half between Sydney Olympic and the Sutherland Sharks, the visitors spent most of it on the back foot trying to extinguish everything that the Blues threw at them.

In the 6th minute a miss-hit Roy O’Donovan attempt landed inches away from Abraham Majok who raced towards the ball only to miss out on the game’s first chance at goal.

Three minutes later Majok attacked again, as he powerfully shouldered off the opposition defence delivering the ball to Oliver Puflett who conjured up a strong solo run in the box only to run out of space.

Sutherland’s best opportunity of the first half came in the 13th minute as Kotaro Katsuta committed a mazy run from just inside his own halfway line before he gave the ball off to Matthew Moric who was pulled down just before he could unleash his shot.

In the 37th minute, Majok missed arguably the most clear-cut chance of the game as he failed to score in front of a virtually an empty net.

While Sutherland three-minutes from the half-time whistle nearly put one on the board as un unsuspecting Noah James leapt into action as he palmed away Jay McGowan’s lethal low-driving shot.

The second half commenced with a bang via Katsuta. After the ball landed to the Japanese import outside of the box, he levelled his attempt with some ferocity as it flew centre metres over the top of the net.

On the 62nd minute mark Olympic created their first meaningful chance of the second half as with some speed behind him Majok crashed his chance into Sutherland’s stoic defence and Adam Parkhouse saw his follow up attempt bullied away to safety.

Sharks custodian Nenad Vekic continued to keep Sutherland in the match as his outstretched hand kept away a smartly placed O’Donovan shot hot on the heels of Parkhouse’s attempt.

However, come the 79th minute, Olympic finally had their moment of reckoning as Teng Kuol took one touch before he fired the ball into the bottom corner to open the scoring.

Labinot Haliti’s troops they secured the three points but this was to change in the dying stages of the match.

In the 90+7th minute of extra time the game took an unexpected turn as Stamatellis won a penalty in the box and then sent James the wrong way as he claimed a massive point for his relegation threatened side.

Sydney Olympic attacker Michael Vakis relayed his frustrations upon seeing his side lost out on the three points.

“We feel gutted about the result, Vakis told Football NSW.

“Particularly in the second half we were all over them, but that’s been the story of our season so far unfortunately. We shouldn’t have given away a penalty but it’s something we can build on and learn from.”

“On the bright side Teng Kuol was our goal scorer and he’s somebody who has a very bright future in the game. Look at what his brothers have achieved, and he is also somebody who is an absolute pleasure to play with. When he came on he changed the game for us.”

Source: Football NSW

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