Ikonomidis on fire in Wanderers win

A Chris Ikonomidis-inspired Western Sydney have further buried Wellington's woeful A-League season, seeing off the Kiwi side 4-0 at ANZ Stadium.

Chris Ikonomidis has starred for Western Sydney in their 4-0 A-league defeat of Wellington.

Chris Ikonomidis has starred for Western Sydney in their 4-0 A-league defeat of Wellington.

Oriol Riera drew first blood before goals to Michael Thwaite, Ikonomidis and Jaushua Sotirio broke the Wanderers' second-half hoodoo on Sunday night, ensuring the at-times wasteful side climbed back into sixth.

From a total 33 shots, the hosts managed 11 on target and, fortunately for coach Josep Gombau, the visiting opposition was only too willing to be moulded into whatever shape his side desired.

"Slowly, slowly we are playing good football," Gombau said.

"We have eight more games and we need a good performance every single one."

For Wellington, who had a sole shot on target from their total five, it marked a second-straight 4-0 loss and 11th of the season.

"Tonight was a last chance maybe for somebody who still dreams about play-offs," Phoenix coach Darije Kalezic said.

"We didn't show enough will and desire to win the game tonight."

Six minutes in, the ever-present Ikonomidis withstood pressure to keep the ball in at the byline and cut back for Josh Risdon, who provided Riera with the ammo he needed for a curling header past Lewis Italiano at the far post.

Though the onslaught continued, the slaughter briefly halted.

So many of the Wanderers' chances went awry it was only due to Wellington's sheer ineptitude that the misses did not prove more costly.

Straight after the break it very nearly did when Andrija Kaluderovic's header skewed just wide of the upright.

Dylan Fox, fresh off his late lunge to stop Ikonomidis in his tracks, came to the fore again to clear off the line and deny a sure thing from Risdon.

The Wanderers kept coming but recent history suggested it would amount to little - in Gombau's previous 13 matches in charge his side have scored just two second-half goals.

To their credit, they did it three times in one night.

Off a pinpoint Marcelo Carrusca corner, Thwaite beat Matija Ljujic in the air for a cracking maiden club goal.

Ikonomidis started and finished the Wanderers' third, embarking on a one-two with Mark Bridge before the veteran provided a delightful backheel for Ikonomidis to slide a venomous shot home.

Then, in the 82nd minute, Italiano denied substitute Brendon Santalab but followed a firm save with a fumble that allowed Sotirio's follow-up shot to roll into the net.

Back To Top
feedback