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Dec 10, 2012   |  1:08AM AET

Match Report: Ono Stars as Wanderers Sink Champions – Again

Match Report: Ono Stars as Wanderers Sink Champions – Again

Marquee man Shinji Ono brought the house down at Parramatta Stadium when he scored his first goal for the NRMA Insurance Western Sydney Wanderers – clinching another win over champions Brisbane Roar in the process.

Marquee man Shinji Ono brought the house down at Parramatta Stadium when he scored his first goal for the NRMA Insurance Western Sydney Wanderers – clinching another win over champions Brisbane Roar in the process.

Second-half substitute Dino Kresinger was brought down in the penalty box in the 86th minute, and Ono took the spot kick. The Japanese superstar slotted it perfectly, low and hard, past goalkeeper Michael Theo, sending the crowd into raptures.

The Wanderers then withstood a desperate late flurry from the Roar before finishing 1-0 winners. They also beat the Roar 1-0 in Brisbane in round four.

Wanderers coach Tony Popovic was thrilled with the result, which sent his team up to fourth place. He said the players had been working towards a result like this for weeks.

“Great result, great result,” Popovic said. “We-ve been rewarded, finally, I think, for some of the great football we-ve been playing. We-d been creating a lot of opportunities, or shots on goal, with no reward, and today I felt we got some reward for good play. I-m really happy for the players”

Popovic said there was never any panic from his side as the game headed into the final stages still without a goal.

“As long as you hang on to that belief in what you are doing, that-s all that matters,” he said.

Popovic said the tremendous fashion in which Ono finished the game, putting the Roar defence under pressure several times, showed that he was now reaching his top form.

“He-s still working on things, and still getting better and better,” Popovic said. “But you can see he-s got that creative spark. He had a lot of shots on goal today and it-s encouraging to see him get into that area.”

The Wanderers made their intentions clear from the start. They were going to work hard to give the Roar as little time on the ball as possible, and the tactic put the visitors under pressure in the first minute when they turned the ball over in defence.

Theo had to punch a cross clear to ease the pressure on that occasion, but the Wanderers kept coming with the strong wind behind them in the first half and had several terrific opportunities to score.

Youssouf Hersi hit the underside of the crossbar with a cracking shot in the eighth minute, but unfortunately the ball stayed out. Ono shot just wide twice from outside the box, and also had a deflected shot palmed wide by Theo.

Mateo Poljak had a long-distance attempt that narrowly missed, and Iacopo La Rocca put the ball over the top from inside the box off a Hersi pass.

Brisbane had a couple of good first-half chances as well, but the Wanderers were the better side for the balance of the opening 45 minutes.

The challenge for the Wanderers, as it has been all season, was to get on the scoresheet, but the chances didn-t come as often in the second half as a Brisbane side that was now more composed pressed forward more often.

Popovic has been moving his forward line around in recent weeks in an attempt to find goalscorers, and Ono played as far forward as he has all season in the first 30 minutes of the second half.

Then, with 15 minutes to go, Kresinger came off the bench to go up front, replacing Joey Gibbs, and Ono dropped just behind him to try to help set things up as the Wanderers looked for the big finish.

The move looked like paying off in the 85th minute when Ono collected a pass and brilliantly beat two defenders, only to shoot just wide. But the Wanderers were only one minute away from capitalising on the most dramatic moment of the game – and getting a crucial win.