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National Youth League - North


National Youth League - North


Wolves Fangs Sharper Than Spirits
Chris Dunkerley

National Youth League - Northern Division
Round 7 - Sunday 2nd November 2003
Pittwater Park, Warriewood, Sydney NSW

Northern Spirit 0
lost to
Wollongong Wolves 1 (Chimaobi Nnagazi 31')

The Northern Spirit side was well off the pace today, dominating general play often times but failing to provide a serious challenge on goal. The Wolves opened brightly, if tentatively, with a 2nd minute Michael Blain shot blocked by Michael Mouyis's foot. At the other end a mad scramble to clear, almost led to a Wolves player handling, but he quickly averted that.

By the 12th minute Spirit were in the ascendent in general play but giving away too many free kicks. In the 18th Chimaobi Nnagazi shot wide for Wollongong as Nathan Hughes stretched himself to cover. A 22nd minute free kick by Wolves curled over the Spirit area and Hughes rose, but dropped it - a blemish in an otherwise impressive outing.

The Wolves grabbed the lead in the 31st minute when from another free kick Blain surged down the right side, wrong footed his marker and placed a centimetre perfect cross, just out of Hughes reach, but an unmarked Nnagazi only had to firmly side-foot it into the left side of the goal. Wolves no. 10. Matthew Gordon was winning control of the midfield.

After the break Spirit looked better organised and Caetano Lima made space on the left, however he shot across goal with Scott Whalan beaten. The match in the 2nd half see-sawed from end to end, but neither side really looked likely to open the floodgates. The best chances both falling to the Wolves with Nnagazi over the crossbar in the 24th and substitute Daniel Miladinski emulated Lima, shooting across goal from the left. The twin Spirit strikers were virtually un-sighted, with Brent Fisher, returning to the field for the first time this season, having a game he should forget - a miss in the 44th minute just the last in string of poor choices. Much can be slated home to the performances of the Wolves central defenders Nathan Abel and Michael Blain.

Wolves coach, Eddie Tisoro, would have been happy with his charges (and the three points) whilst Spirit coach Charlie Davidson will realise the work required on a shaky defence that has leaked four goals in two games, and a weak attack. Davidson said afterwards "It was another great lesson for some of our young squad. We had two 16 year olds on the pitch today and for them as well as the rest it was an experience that will help their development as young pro-soccer players"


    Wollongong Wolves :
    25. Scott Whalan (gk), 2. Michael Robinson, 5. Nathan Abel, 13. Michael Blain, 19. Daniel Trenevski, 12. Tynan Diaz, 4. Matthew Wezakso, 15. Ian Hall, 9. Ricky Bertakis (11. Daniel Milandinski), 10. Matthew Gordon (14. Tony Dulevski) 18. Chimaobi Nnagazi; Sub not used - 15. Rueben Zadkovich (rgk)
    Coach: Eddie Tisoro

    Northern Spirit :
    22. Nathan Hughes, 4. Travis Oughtred, 8. Ashley Ryan (10. Paul Connell), 9. Michael Mouyis, 6. Oliver Skelding, 7. Caetano Lima, 11. Bruce Djite, 5. Erik Paartalu, 25. Omar Obeid (26. Andrew Mailer*), 2. Tyler Simpson, 16. Brent Fisher*. Sub not used: Martin Hale (gk), 23. Roberto Hamad.
    Coach: Charlie Davidson

    Referee: Ryan Shephard
    Assistant Referees: Danny Adamopolous, Jason Blackwood

    BOTN player alert!
    Players of the future:
    Spirit - Nathan Hughes, Caetano Lima, Erik Paartalu;
    Wolves: Matthew Gordon, Michael Blain, Nathan Abel, Chimoabi Nnagazi

Match Report by Chris Dunkerley, Coaches comments courtesy of Northern Spirit.


Saturday 19th January 2002 - 7.00pm at Australian Institute of Sport Fields, Canberra

AIS 2 (Danze 26', Nedeljkovic 89') defeated MARCONI STALLIONS COLTS 1 (DeMarco 90')

On the superb carpet like field at the AIS under darkening skies the young Marconi Colts battled hard against the new year revamped AIS squad. The already very well drilled AIS sat back and made the Colts come at them, which they did but with little composure, whilst the AIS hit them on the break. The argumentative and aggressive Marconi team could have done better, but the AIS seemed to be well able to sweep up anything at the back until after scoring through a nice move which caught Marconi out, they conceded a late goal.

NATIONAL YOUTH LEAGUE - NORTHERN DIVISION - 2001/2002 - ROUND 23 (brought forward)

Saturday 29th December 2001 - 6.30pm at Valentine Park Soccer Centre

NSWIS 0 lost to NEWCASTLE UNITED YOUTH 4 (John Majourovski 8' ,55', Tom Libbesson 70', 80')

Newcastle, despite defeating NSWIS by 4 goals only 3 weeks ago in Newcastle, made hard work of it under bronzed bushfire smoke laden skies at Sydney's north western suburb of Glenwood. Except for an early goal to United, the young lads of the Institute probably had the better of the 1st half, with a goal in the 15th min disallowed but Newcastle had a shot bounce of the left upright 20 mins later. With their 4 first sqaud players, getting on top in the 2nd half, United scored through John Majourovski (about all he did all game) in the 55th min, and after good lead up work Tom Libbesson took a high ball to slot it away (claimed by some as an own gaol). NSWIS almost came back but the 80th min goal to Libbesson put it way beyond doubt. Best for Newcastle: Joel Grennell, Tom Libbesson, and John Bennis.
The starting team for Newcastle was: Mitchell O'Brien (gk), Josh Castillo, Lee Davelaar, Tom Libbesson, Peter McPherson, Jobe Wheelhouse, Joel Grenell, Adam Hughes, John Majurovski, Stuart Musialik, John Bennis; On the bench: Peter Falla, who came on in the 85th minute, Adam Herron, who came on in the 80th minute, Alex Provost (not used), and Joel Theissen, who came on in the 77th minute


Saturday 6th October 2001 - 5pm at Parramatta Stadium

PARRAMATTA POWER YOUTH 5 (Pedrag Bojic 20'; Adam Kwasnik 28', 24'; Michael Brown 40', Steve Eagleton 81') defeated NORTHERN SPIRIT YOUTH 0

A rampant and very impressive Parramatta Power comprehensively defeated a depleted Spirit Youth (without 7 first choice) . It was like sending boys to do men's work I am afraid. Some of the lead up play to, and the goals themselves, were awesome.

Cards: Kwasnik (PP) 36', Kassoum (NS) 41';
Parramatta - Reddy, Bojic, Groves, Carrerra, Oliver, Gavagahn, Eagleton, Biggins, M.Brown, Kwasnik, Vrkic: Subs: Manuel, carmen, Ripepi, Diles, Bridge
Spirit - Rex, Freeman, A. Griffiths, Wilkinson, McLean, Mailer, Robson, Bateup, Kassoum, Catanzaro, Jenke; Subs: Foti, Femia


Saturday 9th December 2000 - 4pm at Christie Park, Marsfield

MARCONI STALLIONS YOUTH 2 (Josaisa 65, Gulessarian 73)

By Chris Dunkerley


Northern Spirit: Sharpe, Sobczyk*, Osman (Vasili 68), Kethel (c), Brickell, Spencer* (Majurovski 84), Berbis, Perenich*, R Griffiths, Catanzaro, Pisano (Antar 68); subs not used - Robson, McLean.
Marconi Stallions: Turnbull*, Trajcevski, Beauchamp, Bennett, De-Roit (Hartshorn 76), Josaisa (Lo Proto 85), Manente, Anabalon, Bozinovski, Gulessarian, Mondello; subs not used - Flynn.

Referee: Brendan Skinner 7/10 (substituted at half-time (injured) by Michael Depercola 7/10). * Overage players.
Yellow Cards: Northern Spirit: Kethel 93, Brickell 94; Marconi Stallions: Gulessarian 19, 91, Anabalon 74; Red Card: Marconi - Gulessarian 91
Best Players: 3. Anthony Mondello (Marconi); 2. Junior Josaisa (Marconi); 1. David Brickell (Spirit)
Game: 6/10

Unlike their seniors at NSO the night before this young Marconi team were able to take the game to their somewhat more experienced opponents and run out winners in a game which was more marked by non play oddities than great play on the park. Spirit fielded three overage players and five that have been on an NSL field this year, but other than reserve keeper Michael Turnbull Marconi rested on its mobile wide players Josaisa and Mondello. Flooding the midfield like their senior team they frustrated the attacking flair of Spirit's Tony Perinich and Ryan Griffiths.

Marconi chose to move on to the attack early and had a few chances in the first few minutes before Spirit settled and forced a number of free kicks and corners in shooting range of Marconi's goal but nothing came of it although they forced Turnbull to parry on the 10th minute.

Attacking down the left at the 24th min Spirit's Damion Pisano hit the crossbar and the rebound fell to Ryan Griffiths whose looping header lobbed the keeper to pit Spirit rightly ahead. Rather than spark Spirit to greater heights they seemed to drop off and it was a dour midfield battle for the rest of the half. In the case of Marconi's Aaron Bennett battle was the word as he did a 45 min audition for World Championship Wrestling and was inexplicably not carded.

The second half started with a change of Referees with Brendan Skinner being replaced by his assistant Michael Depercola due to what seemed a groin strain. In the second half Marconi seemed to realise the game was still open and seemed hungrier for a result. Chris Sharpe was several times brought into action and Spirit closed down across the park. In the 65th min Josaisa was again left free on the left and headed past Sharpe for an equaliser. Unsatisfied with that they continued to press and it was no surprise when in the 73rd min Kevo Gulessarian received the ball after an uncharacteristic error by Sobczyk and slipped the ball under an advancing Sharpe for 1-2. Despite a late rally by Spirit, Marconi battled hard and this was reflected in the flurry of late yellow cards, one a 2nd for Gulessarian who was marched with a red. Even the 6 mins of added time couldn't throw Spirit a life-line and they dropped further points behind a rampant AIS.


Saturday 21st October 2000 - 4pm at Christie Park, Marsfield

NORTHERN SPIRIT 3 (Hunter 79, Griffiths 90, Catanzaro 96 pen)
SYDNEY OLYMPIC 2 (McAllister 71, Gasper 89 pen)

By Chris Dunkerley


Northern Spirit (right): Rex, Hunter, Wilkinson (Antar 28), Perengle, Kethel (c), Schirripa, Vassili, R Griffiths, Engele, Catanzaro, Pisano (Monie 69); subs not used - Brickell, Robson, Femia.

Sydney Olympic: Karoubas, Ahmedi, Durante, Diviano, Gregorace, Seitis, Mirot (Tirovski 81), Collina, McAllister, Gasper, Doumanis (Nicalou 92); subs not used - Fernandez, Cevenini, Panneccasio.

Referee: Wayne Spagnol 7/10; Yellow Cards: Northern Spirit: Wilkinson 16, Pisano 32, Griffiths 88; Sydney Olympic: Ahmedi 13 38, Doumanis 56; Red Card: Olympic - Ahmedi (38)
Best Players: 3. Dylan McAllister (Olympic), 2. Simon Catanzaro (Spirit), 1. Jacob Rex (Spirit); Game: 6/10

Five goals, 3 penalties, 7 yellow cards and a red - reading that you'd think "what a game"! If you sauntered into Christie Park at the 70th minute you would probably support that. Alas the rest of the game left a lot to be desired. Spirit knew their young side, made up of a mix of last year's YL side and quite a few of the Colts, would need to score early at home against this Olympic side. For 25 minutes they pressed attack - with a great chance to 'Cat' at 16 mins when he hit a sweet free kick from 20m only to see it cannon of the right upright. Early on though an expected 'willing' contest developed into a running battle and referee Spagnol realising how the game was degenerating booked one of each side within 16 mins. Despite the real fouls Frank Arok observed from behind me that Spirit players were diving when in fact both sides were. Catanzaro repeated his free kick only to see the Olympic keeper palm it around the upright. From the 30 min Olympic took the upper hand with McAllister, Doumanis, and Gasper dominating play. Indeed they had a great header past Rex by McAllister disallowed for a push off the play. As the half wore on the tempo dropped and it was 0-0 at the break.

Spirit should have come out with a plan to exploit the 10 men of Olympic but Olympic took the game to them. Within the first 15 min Olympic had 8 shots at goal to Spirit's none. Spirit looked like the one's a man down and the disorganisation lead to a great goal in the 71st min by McAllister receiving free on the right and slotting it home past the advancing Rex. Spirit woke up to themselves and at the 79th min a ball came out to defender Hunter who miss-hit his shot but still saw it loop from 25m over the keeper and Spirit were back on level terms. It is unclear a penalty was granted to Olympic in the 89th min but Gasper stepped up and hit low and hard to the left of Rex. You may have thought that was that but two quick goals came in basically in extra time. From a Schirripa free kick Griffiths rose to head well past the keeper, and right on the whistle the third penalty was awarded and Catanzaro made no mistake in making it 3-2 to Spirit and they were out of gaol.

Reports courtesy of: 'The Back of The Net' Web site. For more NYL reports click here :


Sunday 28th October 2000 - 3pm at Sydney United Sports Centre, Edensor Park

SYDNEY UNITED YOUTH 4 (Jedinak, Agyei, Younis, Kupresak)

By Chris Conti

Sydney United Youth powered their way to a convincing win over their younger and less experienced opponents from the ACT at the Sydney United Sports Centre. But for many periods of the game the ACTAS youngsters played some very attractive football and had some chances of their own ... *

ACT Academy of Sport: Doug Hynson; Aidan Brunskill; Matt Menser (Matt Rees); Amied Shadmaan; Steven Masters; Ian Waldon; John O'Brien (Adrien LaButte); Steven Arnott; Matt Anstey; Robbie Cattanach; Daniel Caputo (Marko Nedjlkovic). Subs not used: Andrew Aliffi, Hector Cerda-Cid.
Sydney United Youth: Alexander Krstich; Milan Bosnar; Arthue Diles; velimir Kupresak; Ray Younis; Michael Pearson (Steven Jordan); Mile Jedinak (Pave Jurcevic); Matthew Clownes; Ante Deur; Akwasi Agyei; Chris Sbrinovski (Tomislav Orlovic). Subs not used: Blake Oliver; Pater Markovic.
Yellow cards - Sydney United: Pearson. Referee: Alan Sutton.

* Full Report to be read at 'The Back of The Net' Web site - click here:



Official information from Soccer Australia:

Sunday 17 February 2002
Bob Jane Stadium
South Melbourne Institute 1 lost to Melbourne Knights Youth 2
(Batinovic 6') (Oksuz 30' 82')
Congratulations to Melbourne Knights Youth who are the 2001-2002 National Youth League Southern Division Champions.

"The National Youth League (NYL) commenced in 1984 and is now firmly established as the elite competition for Australia's rising stars. The competition is credited with showcasing the talents of Australian soccer's biggest names. Players such as current LG Socceroos Coach Frank Farina, LG Socceroos Paul Okon, Mark Viduka, Josip Skoko, Kevin Muscat and LG U-23s captain Brett Emerton to name just a few, all began their careers in the NYL competition. The Australian Institute of Sport (A.I.S.) soccer program was borne to participate in the NYL. The competition is played by players who qualify by age for the current FIFA World Youth Championships (ie. players born on or after 1 January 1983). This is adjusted every two years to coincide with the next FIFA World Youth Championships.

The NYL competition is comprised of the following Divisions: -

At the conclusion of all the Premiership Rounds the Top Four (4) placed teams on the Premiership table shall 'play off' for their Divisional Championships in the following manner:-

Match 'A' 1st vs 2nd ; 'B' 3rd vs 4th Loser Eliminated ; 'C' LOSER 'A' vs WINNER 'B' ; 'D' WINNER 'C' vs WINNER 'A'(Grand Final)
The winner of 'D' shall be known as Divisional Champions.
The Southern and South Australian Divisional Champions* will play off to decide who will meet the Northern Division Champions in the National Grand Final to determine the NATIONAL YOUTH LEAGUE CHAMPIONS".


In 2000/01 NYL (Nth) final places - 1st - AIS, 2nd - Marconi Youth, 3. - Northern Spirit, 4th - Parramatta Power. In the 2000/2001 Grand Final Marconi defeated Spirit 4-2. The National Title was won by Melbourne Knights over Marconi.

Brisbane Toros (yeah - who?) admitted instead of Canberra Deakin, with Canberra Cosmos being excluded







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Photos are by C Dunkerley except for old Northern Spirit photos at header - Todd MacRae at left, Simon Catanzaro at right...and Spirit team photo.

Disclaimer: As 90 Minutes & We'll Be Home is a fanzine we offer opinion and hearsay! Match reports are one person's view. It's care only - NO responsibility! In doubt - ring the clubs, or Australian Soccer Association Ltd

Copyright © 2000 - 2002 C Dunkerley

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Most recent revision Saturday 27th December 2003