Tight at the Top - NPL Round 2 Wrap

It’s a three way tie atop the National Premier Leagues ladder with Olympic FC, Brisbane Strikers and Moreton Bay Jets level with two wins apiece from the opening rounds.

An exciting second round continued the hard-fought but attacking football seen last week, resulting in 28 goals, four red cards and two memorable moments in the short histories of two of the competition's newer clubs.

Review the results, goalscorers and competition table in our NPL Weekly Wrap-Up.

NATIONAL PREMIER LEAGUES COMPETITION TABLE

Pos Club P W D L F A +/- Points
1  Olympic FC 2 2 0 0 11 2 +9 6
2  Brisbane Strikers FC 2 2 0 0 7 4 +3 6
3  Moreton Bay United Jets FC 2 2 0 0 5 3 +2 6
4  Western Pride FC 2 1 1 0 3 2 +1 4
5  Sunshine Coast FC Fire 2 1 0 1 8 2 +6 3
6  Northern Fury FC 2 1 0 1 7 5 +2 3
7  FNQ FC Heat 2 1 0 1 4 3 +1 3
8  Redlands United FC 2 1 0 1 3 2 +1 3
9  Queensland Academy of Sport 2 0 1 1 2 7 -5 1
10  Palm Beach Sharks FC 2 0 0 2 2 4 -2 0
11  Brisbane City FC 2 0 0 2 5 11 -6 0
12  CQFC Energy 2 0 0 2 1 13 -12 0

 

MATCH SUMMARIES

Redlands United FC 2 (Zak BRATTAN 67’, Graham FYFE 81’)
FNQ FC Heat 0
Saturday, 16th March @ Spencer Park, 5PM
Crowd: approx 600 (double header combined)

Redlands and Heat exchanged a series of attacking counter-punches in the first half but neither side was able to make the breakthrough – goalkeepers Mitch O’Brien and Mikel Breckinridge producing a series of fine saves to keep it scoreless at the break.

Redlands increasingly took control in the second half, Brattan’s headed opener coming after a period of extended pressure from the Devils.

Heat flirted with an equaliser before Fyfe’s goal claim the points for Redlands, who defended resolutely at the death to deny a valiant late surge from their opponents.

Palm Beach Sharks FC 0
Western Pride FC 1 (Peter DRAGAR 81')
Saturday, 16th March @ Mallawa Complex, 5:30PM
Crowd: approx 500

Western Pride recorded their first competitive victory and briefly went top of the NPL ladder on Saturday evening before other results returned them to the pack.

Pride goalkeeper Steve Purdy played the hero in the first half for the visitors, saving a Palm Beach penalty, before Peter Dragar’s late second half strike proved decisive.

The Sharks cause wasn’t helped when Nick Hulme was dimissed for a second bookable offence, but the hosts will be disappointed not to have earned a share of the points after spurning their chances throughout the match.

CNQFC Energy 1 (Chris Geddes)
Northern Fury FC 6 (Kelly 10′, 53′, Navarro 16′, Isman 66′, Richards 75′, Edds 80′)
Saturday, 16th March @ Jardine Park, 7:00PM
Crowd: approx. 100

Northern Fury jump started their campaign against a hapless Energy side that have now conceded 13 goals in their opening two fixtures and are bottom of the NPL ladder for the second consecutive week.

Fury had raced to an early lead before Corey Waples was dimissed in the 25th minute for a challenge from behind – the second dismissal for Fury in two weeks, adding suspensions to an already challenging injury list.

The one man advantage saw Energy pull a goal back through Scotsman Chris Geddes but Fury ran away with the match in the second half – netting a further four goals to humble their hosts and return their goal differential to the black after a heavy opening round defeat.

Brisbane City FC 3 (Antonio MURRAY 8’, Martin RIGGS 10’, Eric FRAZIER 75’pen)
Brisbane Strikers FC 5 (Greg KING 25’, Ryan COKELL 46’, Nick ROBINSON 57’, Chay HEWS 79’, Matt THURTELL 90+2’)
Saturday, 16th March @ Spencer Park, 7:30PM
Crowd: approx 600 (double header combined)

City fans could have been mistaken for thinking their side’s opening round capitulation to Olympic was well behind them after racing to an early two goal lead against Strikers. However, after settling into the contest their capital city rivals mounted an impressive fightback, gaining the lead for themselves just before the hour.

Momentum swung back to City with a penalty and the dismissal of Strikers defender Corey Hooper with fifteen minutes remaining, but Strikers demonstrated impressive fortitude at the death, not only regaining the lead, but extending the margin in injury time to leave City without a competition point from the opening two rounds.

Sunshine Coast FC Fire 1 ( Leon DWYER 14’)
Moreton Bay United Jets FC 2 (Karl DODD 48’, Matthew CAPELLO 79’)
Sunday, 17th March @ Sunshine Coast Stadium, 2:00PM
Crowd: approx 500

Newly formed Moreton Bay Jets claimed bragging rights and forged some early club history by winning their first derby against state powerhouse Sunshine Coast FC.

The match is yet to receive a moniker, but Jets demonstrated the kind of resilience rivalries are renowned for in a resolute second-half performance after Dwyer had nodded Fire ahead early on.

Fire couldn’t convert a series of further chances in the first half before the Jets gained the ascendency in the second stanza; some late to-and-fro between the players setting the scene for a compelling and competitive rematch later in the season.

Olympic FC 5 (Tim SMITS 27' 37', Mark FISK 43', Jake MACLEAN 68', Jai INGHAM 78')
Queensland Academy of Sport 0
Sunday, 17th March @ Goodwin Park, 6:00PM
Crowd: (unavailable)

Olympic continued their free-scoring form from the opening round at home against the Academy in a comprehensive performance that sees the Brisbane-based club atop the National Premier Leagues ladder at the close of the round on goal difference.

Tim Smits built on his impressive opening round performance, nabbing a first half brace to take him equal top of the goal-scoring charts with fellow ex-Roar player and Moreton Bay Jet Royce Brownlie.

QAS meanwhile hung-on valiantly in the second half after being reduced to ten men on fifty minutes, but ran out of puff late on, conceding twice more in the final half hour.

 

Words: Michael Flynn (Football Queensland)




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Player Points System

The Player Points System (PPS) for the 2014 NPL Senior Men’s is set at a maximum of 250 points for each club. The current PPS table as of Friday, 12th September 2014 is:

 Brisbane City - 217 pts

 Brisbane Strikers - 247 pts

 FNQ FC Heat - 235 pts

 Moreton Bay Utd Jets - 222 pts

 Northern Fury - 185 pts

 Olympic FC - 241 pts

 Palm Beach Sharks - 247 pts

 Redlands United - 198 pts

 Sunshine Coast Fire - 204 pts

 SWQ Thunder - 150 pts

 Western Pride - 219 pts

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