Photo: Jeff Fulton
In what can only be described as David vs Goliath it was welcome to the SFL for AFC up against Stirling who boast the likes of star players Victor Brauner, AJ Martino, Thiago Mesquita it was always going to be a battle. Not to be out done AFC had some SFL experience of there own in the likes of Spiro Nenadicc, Tom Eastman, Ronnie Varas and newly promoted coach Jon Bucolo.
The game started as most people would have predicted with Stirling controlling possession from the get go with plenty of quick passes and movement however they could not find the breakthrough with some deciplined defending from AFC and several strong saves from Mike Kelly keeping the game at 0-0.
Knocking on the door with shot after shot Stirling finally hit the front through Brazilian sensation Victor Brauner as he intercepted a pass mid court and smashed one into the back of the net. It didn’t take long for AFC to respond with Ronnie Varas making an immediate impact for his new team after winning a foul just on half way then finishing off the free kick by sending the ball into bottom corner. Ending the half at 1-1 it was very much game on.
Second half began in what can only be described as a lesson for AFC with no matter how well you play in the first half good teams find a way and if you lose concentration you can get punished. Stirling capitalised on this with Brauner completing his hat-trick and with further goals to AJ and upcoming youngster Connor Crews AFC found themselves 5-1 down and in danger of being a lot more if it wasn’t for the heroics of Mike Kelly who continued to frustrate the Stirling attack.
With the scoreline probably where most people imagined it would be and possibly giving AFC no chance of a comeback the team showed true grit and determination lead by work horse Tom Eastman who threw himself at everything and his efforts were rewarded when he scored his first for the season and start the AFC comeback. Stirling who are usually so composed looked a little rattled as AFC were slowly working their way into the game and created more chances as the game went on. The goals eventually came for AFC with Varas and Nenadicc at the forefront for AFC as they capped off a remarkable comeback to snatch a point and kick start there SFL season.
A huge effort for Perth AFC that had a number of inexperienced players in the squad putting in solid performances and a special mention to Steven Forbes for his first ever futsal game on such a big stage against strong opposition.
Perth AFC 5 drew with Stirling 5
Spiro Nenadicc (2)
Ronnie Varas (2)
Tom Eastman (1)
Snippers Barber Shop Man Of The Match Mike Kelly.
Photo: Jeff Fulton
Perth AFC Draft Team Beaten With Some Last Minute Controversy!
The draft team kicked off what was a history making day for the club as Perth AFC started there SFL campaign down at the Pro Futsal Centre on a warm Saturday evening in Bibra Lake.
Up against a young, quick Stirling side who held possession well it was AFC who got off to a strong start with two clinical finishes from Kevin Higgins within minutes putting Stirling on the back foot early and resulting in Stirling coach Thiago calling a timeout and having to reassess their game plan.
This proved dividends as the momentum shifted and the youth of Stirling took control of the game through some well played passages, some good finishes and a few errors from AFC giving them a 3-2 lead going into the break.
New signing Andrija Jukic came out of the break strong with some good hold up play, finding the gaps and pushing forward for an equaliser in which he was rewarded for with a cool calm collected finish where he rounded the keeper and slotted it bottom corner on the angle.
Not to be intimidated Stirling’s persistent sharp passing and ball movement and some miscommunication from AFC allowed Stirling to hit back twice and go ahead 5-3.
The AFC boys continued to battle and push hard for a result but only managed to peg one goal back through a Mino rocket making its way through a sea of bodies.
Perth AFC 4 def by Stirling 5
Kevin Higgins (2)
Andrija Jukic (1)
Mino Saihati (1)
Snippers Barber Shop Man Of The Match Kevin Higgins.