Sydney FC were too strong for a lacklustre Melbourne City in the FFA Cup quarter-finals on Wednesday night.
Without star striker Bruno Fornaroli, the visitors were on the wrong end of a 2-0 scoreline. A dominant Sydney continued where they left off last season, while new signing Adrian Mierzejewski looks to be an astute addition who has the capability to set the A-League alight in the upcoming campaign.
Adrian Mierzejewski – a shining light for the Sky Blues
Sydney FC’s high profile signing was instrumental in his side’s victory over Melbourne City. Brought in from UAE outfit Al-Sharjah as a replacement for the recently departed Filip Holosko, Mierzejewski showcased his talent in his starting debut for Graham Arnold’s team. The Pole’s passing was clinical and he was on hand to provide the assist for Alex Brosque’s sublime chipped finish.
An impressive starting debut, the attacker’s work rate on and off the ball was commendable and fans will be licking their lips as the Sky Blues ramp up their preparations for the upcoming A-League season.
Melbourne City’s (lack of) formation
City’s defence struggled to deal with the Sky Blues’ array of attacking talent. The home side’s versatility in the final third meant that Warren Joyce’s players were often a pace behind their A-League counterparts and chasing shadows. Playing with a back three that included Iacopo La Rocca, Michael Jakobsen and Bart Schenkeveld, Sydney dominated their opponents and wreaked havoc on City’s new look defensive trio.
Are City a threat without Bruno Fornaroli?
In their first outing since the injury to their star striker, early signs do not look too promising for the current FFA Cup holders. In the absence of Fornaroli, City looked a shade of their former selves. Going without the talismanic Uruguayan, Joyce must implement a new style of play which suits his side – yet going by tonight’s performance, the City boss has not found the solution just yet. With time running out until the start of the A-League season, Melbourne City and Joyce must find a quick fix as they look to cope without Fornaroli.
Cahill’s omission from the starting XI
Why did Warren Joyce rest the iconic Socceroo? Following his exploits with the national team, the Melbourne City manager thought it would be best to leave the star man on his bench. Without Cahill, the visitors were toothless in attack and rarely threatened Sydney’s defence. In the absence of Fornaroli, Cahill is a more than capable replacement and with a proven track record in front of goal, the Australian favourite should have been included from the beginning.