Port Melbourne entered Friday nights game looking over their shoulder ever so slightly coming up against Richmond SC, well aware of the amount times this season that Richmond have pinched points against the big teams.
This game was no different. The Sharks have had a trend of starting games off slowly, so as we entered the 8.30pm kick off things didn’t start so routinely. Alec Goodwin started up front for David Stirton who had a minor leg injury. Goodwin had a headed attempt tipped over the bar from a Jamie De Abreu cross within the first few minutes.
This was unlike the Sharks to start a game off so strongly. Then on seven minutes a free kick was awarded to Port Melbourne just outside the area. Little Irishman Alan Mulcahy was able to catch Richmond shot stopper Chris Davis off guard and curl the ball into Davis’ left hand corner, much to his and Richmond’s dismay.
On 19 minutes Lambros Honos after linking up with Jacob Eliopoulos was able to deftly chip the ball over Davis from outside the area in what can only be described as exquisite and a contender for goal of the season. 2-0 to the Sharks which had many heads turning. The rest of the half was dull with both teams going back and forth not wanting to push the issue too much.
It all changed inside the first two minutes of the second half when Alan Mulcahy had fouled his Richmond counterpart. Whilst Mulcahy was on the ground receiving his caution, to the dismay of Richmond SC player Jordan Seeto, he kicked the ball at Mulcahy. The referee had adjudged the reaction was careless and sent Seeto to the dressing room.
Richmond not be undone decided to force Port Melbourne shot stopper Stjepan Gal into back to back saves on 48 minutes. Crucial moments of this game. Gal was phenomenal in goals. On 54 minutes though Alec Goodwin was played into the penalty area by Honos. Goodwin was able to slice the ball with the outside of his foot into the bottom left hand corner of goal to make it 3-0.
Gal was forced into action again two minutes later with back to back saves to keep the visitors at bay. Mulcahy on 63 minutes was again given free kick duties. He didn’t disappoint as he curled in anther peach of a goal to Davis’ left, much to the dismay of the Richmond fans who thought the foul was dubious. 4-0 to the Sharks.
Richmond knowing there was a lot at stake pushed numbers forward to try and make something of the game forcing Gal into consecutive saves on 70 minutes. Gal was not to be undone though and kept the visitors at bay yet again. On 80 minutes substitute Dennis Koutroulis scored his first senior goal for the club after being promoted from the under 20’s during the week. After a magnificent pass from Adrian Zahra with the outside of his boot, Koutroulis’ right foot shot thunder-bolted into the back of Davis’ net to make it 5-0.
Just as stoppage time approached, substitute Erhan Yalaz played in fellow winger De Abreu from the left hand side with a ball beyond the Richmond back four. De Abreu was one-on-one with Davis & calmly slotted the ball behind the Richmond shot stopper to make it 6-0 to the Sharks.
Then just as the game seemed all done and dusted, Mulcahy rounded off his hat-trick from the penalty spot in the 94th minute. Erhan Yalaz had shown great desire to intercept a pass from Geert-Arend Roorda who subsequently brought him down as he raced into the penalty area. Mulcahy calmly stepped up to tuck the ball away and put the icing on the cake for Port Melbourne.
A resounding victory for the Sharks on a night were the game could’ve gone either way early in the second half. Port Melbourne travel to Broadmeadows this Saturday night as they take on Hume City.