Round 4 of the Victorian NPL occurred over the weekend with another exciting round of football in the books.
Which sides have started strong out of the blocks, and which sides have underperformed in the early part of the season?
Find out below!
Melbourne Knights 3-2 Bentleigh Greens
The Knights have ended the first month of NPL football with a win, coming back from two goals down to record 3-2 victory at Knights Stadium on Friday night.
Playing away from home, the Greens started the game strong scoring the first two goals of the contest inside the opening 25 minutes of the game. Pierce Waring was the first to strike in the 10th minute, firing a stunning strike from range. Yagoub Mustafa would then double Bentleigh’s advantage in the 22nd minute.
Before halftime the Knights pegged one goal back, Mohammad Sumaoro scoring off a set piece in the 40th minute to give his side momentum going into the break and would take control in the second half.
The Knights would level the scores in the 66th minute, Gian Albano stepping up for the equaliser before finding the net again in the 83rd minute to complete the comeback and guide his side to victory.
Green Gully 1-0 Dandenong City
Green Gully have moved up to third on the ladder following their victory at home over strugglers Dandenong City.
Needing just one goal to secure victory, it would come from the penalty spot with the Gully awarded a penalty on the stroke of halftime, with Nahuel Bonada converting for his second goal of the season.
Port Melbourne Sharks 3-0 Eastern Lions
The Sharks have finished their first month of NPL football unbeaten, recording a convincing win on the road against the Lions at Gardiners Creek Reserve.
Scotsman Christopher Duggan brace guided the Sharks to victory, scoring the opening goal of the contest in the 17th minute, and scoring from the penalty spot to put his side three goals ahead in the 52nd mind, putting the game to bed before the hour mark.
George Mells would also get on the scoresheet and open his account to the NPL 2022 season, scoring in the 34th minute to double his side’s advantage in the opening half.
Having started the season with draws, the Sharks have taken all three points in back-to-back games.
Avondale 3-0 Hume City
Having suffered a shock loss to St Albans last week at Avenger Park, Avondale got back to their winnings ways on the road to Hume.
Stefan Valentini would break the deadlock for Avondale, scoring his first goal of the season in the 24th minute to help put his side a goal ahead at the main break.
Ahead 1-0 at halftime, Avondale would put a foothold on the game in the second half, forward Liam Boland doubling the away side’s advantage in the 47th minute. Avondale would get score a third in injury time.
Ahead 2-0, Avondale brought on Stefan Zinni in the 67th minute for his first appearance this season, he’d score moments from the full time whistle to guide his side to a comfortable win. Hume meanwhile linger at the bottom of the table.
Altona Magic 2-0 Dandenong Thunder
The road trip down to the South-East has proved fruitful for the Altona Magic who recorded their first win of the season.
Paying under lights on Saturday at George Andrews Reserve, neither side were able to break the deadlock in the opening half with the Magic opening proceedings in the 47th minute.
Robert Harding would be the scorer for Altona’s opening goal, scoring his first goal of the 2022 season. Winger Tommy Semmy also scored his first goal in Magic colours in the 57th minute to seal the game.
Heidelberg United 2-0 Oakleigh Cannons
Having been slaughtered in the past two weeks, Heidelberg United got on the winners list for the first time in 2022 cruising past the Oakleigh Cannons.
Back playing at home at Olympic Village, United took the lead in the 40th minute through Kaine Sheppard to put his side a goal ahead at halftime.
Heidelberg would leave it late to secure victory, with Chudiar Tharjiath coming off the bench in the 80th minute and scoring the sealer five minutes into injury time.
South Melbourne 4-1 St Albans Saints
After an encouraging start to the season, St Albans have had their momentum halted by South Melbourne. Top of the table with 12 points, South are the only side to have a perfect start to the 2022 NPL season.
South were two goals ahead inside the opening half an hour, Pat Langlois scoring from close range to break the deadlock in the 25th minute before the Saints conceded an own goal to put them two goals down heading into halftime.
Though St Albans would score on the verge of halftime, with Hakeem Alaraibi pegging a goal back to trim the margin back to a goal.
Ahead 2-1 inside the final ten minutes of the game, St Albans would fall apart late with Langlois completing his brace and doubling Souths advantage in the 85th minute. St Albans day would then go from bad to worse.
Nikola Jurkovic would give away a penalty in stoppage time, Harry Sawyer converting from the spot to record an impressive three goal victory.
Image Source: Mike Robles