• Sat. Oct 29th, 2022

The Phoenix had a likely match-winning penalty saved and were left fuming as they thought they should have been awarded at least one more.

May 30, 2021

The Wellington Phoenix were left to rue a late penalty miss as they drew 2-2 with Perth Glory on Sunday afternoon, as well as a couple that werent given and had their players and staff fuming.
They might have extended their unbeaten run in the A-League to 10 matches, but they now need other results to go their way if theyre to make the top six and the playoffs as well as a win on Friday at Macarthur FC.
It all would have been so different had Ulises Dávila converted his 90th-minute penalty, which he took ahead of Tomer Hemed, who earlier scored for the fifth time in his last four outings to give the Phoenix the lead in the 24th minute at Eden Park in Auckland, a venue where they are still yet to lose.
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Ulises Dávila missed a 90th-minute penalty that likely would have given the Wellington Phoenix a much-needed win.
His spot kick was saved by former Phoenix keeper Liam Reddy and despite several howls of protest from Phoenix players in the seven minutes of stoppage time that followed, they werent given the penalty they so desired.
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Phoenix coach Ufuk Talay pointed to an incident in the 97th minute where Louis Fenton appeared to be pushed by Perth defender Darryl Lachman as he dove to meet a cross, as the one that left him most upset
From where I saw it the penalty was on Louis. The ball was delivered over and the player didnt have any intention for the ball and just gave a bit of nudge in the back.
The other shouts were for handball, with the most obvious incidents coming first in the wake of a corner in the 93rd minute, when Diego Castro blocked a shot by Dávila, then slid on and hit the ball with his hand as it fell back to the pitch, then in the wake of another corner, when the ball hit Castro in the arm as he jumped in a contest with Steven Taylor.
They were checked and given the all clear by video assistant referee Nick Waldron, and Talay had little to say about them.
Andrew Cornaga/Photosport
Wellington Phoenix forward Tomer Hemed celebrates after scoring in the first half against Perth Glory.
The handballs are the handballs, he said.
The handball rule, I still havent worked out this season, so I cant really comment on that one.
The presence of New Zealand referee Waldron as the VAR drew the ire of Phoenix goalkeeping coach Paul Gothard, who wrote in a tweet that has since been deleted: cant get national league right, so why is he doing A-League.
Hemeds early goal came after he found an acre of space in the middle of the box and thundered home a ball played in by Fenton.
The Israeli strikers goals have played a big part in the Phoenixs late push for the playoffs, and it was a big call for Dávila to take the late penalty ahead of him, after two second-half goals for Perth and a curled reply from substitute Jaushua Sotirio had left the scores locked at 2-all.
Dávila had also come off the bench midway through the second half after missing the Phoenixs last three games with a hamstring injury and tried to spark them into life.
He had previously allowed Hemed to take a penalty when the striker was in a goalscoring rut back in March and the pair discussed the matter before the Mexican midfielder stepped up to the mark.
While his shot was saved by Reddy, who correctly dived to his left, Talay had no issue with the decision.
For me within the game its the players that feel fresh and who feel up to it who will step up and take it and Uli stepped up to take it and he missed.
Andrew Cornaga/Photosport
Wellington Phoenix defender Tim Payne appeared to have been brought down in the second minute, but no penalty was ultimately give.
It happens. The best players in the world miss penalties. Its part of the game. He would have loved to have scored and got the winner there but sometimes it happens in football.
The Phoenix went into Sundays match knowing that if they were to win, and to win again away at Macarthur, they would qualify for the playoffs, despite having spent most of the season based in Wollongong, with trans-Tasman travel made difficult as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
But while a crowd of 22,233 turned out to support them making for a total of 46,338 in attendance at their two matches in New Zealand this season they only picked up one point, which is unlikely to be enough to secure them a place in the top six.
Bruno Fornaroli came off the bench to equalise for Perth on the hour mark at the end of a counter-attack, before Callum Timmins gave the visitors the lead in the 74th minute, with a rocket from well outside the box into the top right-hand corner.
Perth were also in need of a win to keep their top six hopes in their own hands, and were playing away for the first time in nine matches and seeking their first win in seven outings on the road.
The Phoenix appeared to have made the perfect start, when referee Alex King pointed to the spot in the second minute, having judged Tim Payne to have been tripped at a free kick, but after a VAR intervention and a review on the pitchside monitor, he changed his mind.
It was a preview of the penalty drama that would follow late on, and Talay hoped the fact that King had awarded two including the one he reversed hadnt stopped from awarding a third in the dying stages.
It shouldnt influence anything. Its black or white, its a penalty, or its not a penalty.
Whether you have one or three penalties in a game, it should be irrelevant.
Wellington Phoenix 2 (Tomer Hemed 24, Jaushua Sotirio 80) Perth Glory 2 (Bruno Fornaroli 61. Callum Timmins 74) HT: 1-0