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Early goal gives Adelaide United win in Territory

Sergio Cirio makes a run
Sergio Cirio makes a run
Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images

The A-League pre-season friendlies are really getting moving and on Saturday moved in to a new destination as Adelaide United managed a 1-0 win over Melbourne City in front of a healthy crowd at ANZAC Oval in Alice Springs.

The match forms part of a relationship Adelaide is building with the people and government of the Northern Territory (the only member federation not competing in the FFA Cup) to add to football in the region, through playing friendlies and staging training camps.

It was a perfect start for Adelaide United, who delighted the fans, scoring in the third minute as Awer Mabil sent in a cross for Sergio Cirio, left wide open, allowing him to head home the opener.

With an opening goal just three minutes in Adelaide United were afforded the ability to have some defensive practice and saw NIgel Boogaard and Dylan McGowan organizing and standing firm at the back.

Melbourne City could have found an equalizer in the 12th minute as Mate Dugandzic cut the ball back, but it was for no one, as the Victorians showed their rustiness.

The fluid match kept going and Adelaide were next up to have a chance as Cirio sent a ball for Djite who got a chance away but Tando Velaphi dealt with his effort.

The match was running from end-to-end and moments later it was City who had a chance to equalize as Damien Duff's cross was met by Mate Dunandzic only to be denied by a Eugene Galekovic save.

Later in the half a neat through ball from Robert Koren allowed David Williams a chance but he sent his shot across the face of Galekovic's goal to keep it 1-0.

At the end of the first half Adelaide United lost two to injury as Osama Malik left with a leg injury while Jordan Elsey's was more serious with scans revealing a broken arm.

Melbourne City looked better in the second half as they pressured Adelaide but failed to do much with all the possession that they had.

Despite having less of the possession it was Adelaide who had the better chances in the second half as Marcelo Carrusca had two dangerous chances, the first going over the bar and the second from a free-kick which just missed Cirio who could have sealed the match.

In the end it didn't matter as Melbourne City rarely threatened, allowing Adelaide to seal the 1-0 win thanks to the early goal.

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