A-League review: Phoenix extend unbeaten run, Inman earns Roar away point

By Sports Desk December 28, 2019

Wellington Phoenix moved into the A-League's top six following a 3-1 win over Western United that extended their unbeaten run to seven matches.

After four defeats to start the campaign, Wellington have had an upturn in form and Ufuk Talay's side led 1-0 at half-time through David Ball's poked finish from a Ulises Davila cross.

New Zealand international Callum McCowatt then scored his first A-League goal after the break before Davila beat the offside trap and coolly finished 10 minutes from time.

The home side would grab a consolation, though, Steven Taylor bizarrely blocking a shot with his outstretched arm when lying on the ground to concede a penalty that Alessandro Diamanti converted.

However, that was all United had to show for their efforts as they missed the opportunity to go second ahead of Melbourne City.

The clash between the A-League's two bottom clubs - Newcastle Jets and Brisbane Roar - ended in a 1-1 draw thanks to substitute Bradden Inman's 87th-minute equaliser.

Newcastle had conceded 20 goals in their previous nine games but were indebted to Glen Moss' fine save to push Aiden O'Neill's effort around the post early on.

The Jets went ahead before the break too, Dimitrios Petratos following up to score after Jamie Young had parried Jason Hoffman's effort straight to him.

But Roar boss Robbie Fowler brought on Inman and was rewarded three minutes from time when he collected O'Neill's pass on the edge of the box, swivelled and fired a shot in off the crossbar.

Brisbane remain winless away from home this season, yet Inman's late leveller meant they avoided slipping below the bottom-of-the-table Jets.

Related items

  • Coronavirus: PFA claims 30 per cent player pay cut would harm UK government services Coronavirus: PFA claims 30 per cent player pay cut would harm UK government services

    The Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) claims "essential public services" would lose important revenue if players take the 30 per cent pay cut proposed by Premier League clubs.

    Highly-paid stars have come under increasing public pressure to commit to a wage reduction after the coronavirus pandemic brought England's top flight to a halt until at least May.

    Liverpool on Saturday joined Tottenham, Newcastle United, Norwich City and Bournemouth in placing a number of non-playing staff on furlough. The scheme sees the United Kingdom government cover 80 per cent of an individual's wages up to the value of £2,500.

    Health secretary Matt Hancock called on footballers to "play their part" and Premier League clubs agreed at a meeting on Friday to approach them over a pay cut.

    No agreement was reached with the PFA, which suggested it was not the right approach, mooting that services such as the National Health Service (NHS) could suffer a financial blow.

    However, the players' union stated a "substantial contribution" will be made once talks have been concluded.

    The PFA's statement read: "The players are mindful that as PAYE [pay as you earn] employees, the combined tax on their salaries is a significant contribution to funding essential public services - which are especially critical at this time.

    "Taking a 30 per cent salary deduction will cost the Exchequer substantial sums. This would be detrimental to our NHS and other government-funded services.

    "The proposed 30 per cent salary deduction over a 12-month period equates to over £500m in wage reductions and a loss in tax contributions of over £200m to the government.

    "What effect does this loss of earning to the government mean for the NHS? Was this considered in the Premier League proposal and did the health secretary, Matt Hancock, factor this in when asking players to take a salary cut?

    "We welcomed the opportunity to discuss this with the Premier League today and we are happy to continue talks.

    "It is our priority to finalise the precise details of our commitment as soon as possible. However, to achieve a collective position for all Premier League players - of which there are many different financial and contractual circumstances from club-to-club - will take a bit more time. 

    "The PFA Charity has also agreed to make a substantial contribution to a player-led initiative once the details are finalised.

    "There should be no doubting the players and captains are committed to achieving this as soon as possible. They recognise their role in wider society and what they need to do, as a group, to help and support others."

    The PFA also claimed the Premier League's decision to advance £125million to EFL and National League clubs and donate £20m to the NHS and other charitable causes was insufficient.

    "£20m is welcome, but we believe it could be far bigger," said the statement.

    "The EFL money is an advance. Importantly, it will aid cashflow in the immediate, but football needs to find a way to increase funding to the EFL and non-league clubs in the long-term.

    "Many clubs require an increase in funding just to survive. We believe in our football pyramid and again stress the need for solidarity between all clubs."

    The statement added that players want to ensure their financial contributions support clubs, players and staff at all levels of the football pyramid and the NHS, whose workers it called "the real heroes".

  • Coronavirus: Liverpool slammed by former Red Carragher over furlough decision Coronavirus: Liverpool slammed by former Red Carragher over furlough decision

    Jamie Carragher has blasted Liverpool for their decision to place staff impacted by the Premier League suspension on furlough, suggesting the move loses the club "respect and goodwill".

    Members of the workforce that are affected can claim 80 per cent of their wages – up to £2,500 a month – from the United Kingdom government, though Liverpool will top up any shortfall in their pay.

    The Reds announced these measures on Saturday, with Tottenham, Newcastle United, Norwich City and Bournemouth all previously taking advantage of the government scheme.

    Other clubs have been criticised for furloughing non-playing staff, with detractors suggesting clubs owned by wealthy individuals or companies should not be getting assistance from the British taxpayer to cover wage costs.

    In Carragher's opinion, Liverpool's decision has seen them lose much of the respect Jurgen Klopp and players had earned the club for their behaviour and attitudes earlier in the crisis, with Jordan Henderson reportedly spearheading an attempt from Premier League players to raise funds for the National Health Service.

    Writing on his official Twitter account, Carragher said: "Jurgen Klopp showed compassion for all at the start of this pandemic, senior players heavily involved in Premier League players taking wage cuts.

    "Then all that respect and goodwill is lost, poor this @LFC."

    The Premier League announced on Friday it will not resume action in early May as had previously been planned.

  • Ireland make early Kenny appointment as McCarthy steps down Ireland make early Kenny appointment as McCarthy steps down

    Stephen Kenny has replaced Mick McCarthy as Republic of Ireland manager, the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) announced on Saturday.

    The former Dundalk boss was primed to take the helm after Euro 2020, but the postponement of that tournament to next year amid the coronavirus pandemic has forced the FAI's hand.

    Ireland face Slovakia in the play-offs for the continental competition, but that tie is also subject to an indefinite delay.

    McCarthy, whose contract was due to expire on July 31, has therefore stepped aside early, with Under-21s boss Kenny officially taking on the role earlier than his previous start date of August 1.

    "The Football Association of Ireland announces that Mick McCarthy is to be succeeded as national team manager by Stephen Kenny with immediate effect," read a statement from the governing body.

    "The handover has been agreed with both men in light of the delay to the European Championship play-offs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    "Mick McCarthy's contract was due to expire on July 31 after the UEFA Euro 2020 finals, with Stephen initially scheduled to step up from his Under-21 team role on August 1.

    "This move allows Stephen Kenny time to plan for the European Championship play-off semi-final against Slovakia later in the year."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.