Strikers Defeated by Knights Despite Strong Showing

Feb 26, 2020 by

The Brisbane Strikers were unable to capitalise on a good performance last night against the Gold Coast Knights, unfortunately, losing out to the NPL QLD champions 2-1 at Perry Park. 

Following a similarly frustrating 2-1 loss to Brisbane City just three days prior, Strikers were motivated to put things right and secure a first home victory of the season. 

The game, however, would get off to the worst possible start as Strikers were unable to clear a Gold Coast Knights cross with the ball eventually falling to Jheison Macuace who was able to poke it home and put the away side ahead. 

Despite the unfortunate start, Strikers seemed undeterred and took control of the game for the majority of the first half. 

After large spells of possession, the home side would find their equaliser as Michael Ndjekompte was sent through from a brilliant Chris Fullerton through-pass with the frontman able to pick out the top corner. 

Having gone into half time on level terms, Strikers continued to enjoy a good share of possession and created chances throughout the second half with Jake McLean, Nodan Thapa, and Emilio Martinez all testing Knights goalkeeper Josh Langdon.  

The Knights would also find themselves coming close to breaking the deadlock throughout the second half but were denied largely down to several excellent saves from Strikers gloveman Brendan White. 

The game, however, would take a devasting turn as the Knights were able to convert from a cross with substitute Jarrod Kyle getting the crucial touch with just five minutes remaining in the match. 

Strikers would continue to put their opponents under serious pressure but were ultimately unable to bypass a well organised Knights defence with the game finishing as a 2-1 defeat. 

Goals 

2’- Gold Coast Knights- Strikers were unable to clear an early Knights cross with the ball landing at the feet of Columbian forward Jheison Macuace who applied the finishing touch. 

24’- Brisbane Strikers- Chris Fullerton sent through an inch-perfect pass to Michael Ndjekompte who brought the ball down with his chest before dispatching a ruthless finish into the top corner for his first Strikers goal. 

85’- Gold Coast Knight- Knights fullback Jaiden Walker fizzed in a pinpoint cross to substitute Jarrod Kyle who provided a great finish to put the visitors back in front. 

E-Z-Go Man of the Match 

Michael Ndjekompte earned E-Z-Go Man of the Match plaudits after a fantastic all-round display in his first start for the club. The forward was highly effective as a forward outlet for his teammates and showed his goal-scoring instincts off with a fantastic finish in the first half. In reaction to receiving the award, the striker said he didn’t expect it and hopes that the next time he scores it will help the team win. 

Coaches Reaction 

“Tonight is really tough for us because a draw would’ve definitely been a fair result. The spells of dominance we’ve had so far this season have to start being converted into goals and on the defensive side, we can’t afford to be switching off for crosses. I’m happy with some of the football we are playing as a team and performances from key individuals, we just need to keep working hard to ensure we can turn our performances into wins.” 

Owen Baker, Brisbane Strikers Head Coach 

Interesting Facts 

As well as new signing Michael Ndjekompte scoring on his first start for the club, Owen Baker also gave debuts to teenage duo Nodan Thapa and Luke Lister. Both players have been impressing so far this season for Strikers’ Under 20 side with Owen Baker saying that their introduction off the bench last night added great energy to the game and that they will have more opportunities throughout the season. The pair become the second and third teenagers to make their Strikers first-team debut this season following Chris Fullerton. 

Next Game 

Brisbane Strikers will play their third consecutive home game this Saturday hosting Moreton Bay Jets at 6:30 pm in an NPL QLD fixture. 

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