After a disappointing result at home last weekend the Jets were desperate to find that winning formula that has deserted them in recent weeks. With Adam Taggart, Conner Chapman, Josh Brillante and Andrew Hoole unavailable due to National U/22 duties, the task for the home team was going to be tough.
Both teams struggled to find their way early. Each guilty of turning over possession and neither could capitalise on the other. As the first half got older, Newcastle was marginally the better of the two sides. But they were unable to take advantage of superior field position and half a dozen corner kicks.
Finally the deadlock was broken in 41st minute when a beautiful cross from Craig Goodwin was deflected into the back of the net by Melbourne Victory defender Mitch Nicholls. The home crowd finally had something to cheer about and grew in voice, feeling confident with their team leading 1 nil at the break.
The second half was only minutes old when a chance went begging for Newcastle to go 2 nil up. A great build up by the Jets had left James Browns unmarked at the far post, but he had a horrible attempt at goal. Immediately Melbourne capitalised, turning defense into attack. A perfectly timed pass by Barbarouses to Nabbout caught the Jets off guard and the scores were level in a blink of an eye.
As if to show his disappointment coach Gary Van Egmond hooked James Brown moments later and called upon James Virgili.
For brief moments both sides showed some brilliance with the ball but the trends from the first half of poor execution and turning over possession continued. Melbourne injected Archie Thompson into the game at the 67th minute and he almost proved an instant success.
Amazingly Newcastle had double the chances on goal but were unable to find the back of the net. Searching for goal, coach Van Egmond replaced Emil Heskey with countrymen Michael Bridges. Unfortunately for Newcastle that second goal didn’t eventuate and a 1 all draw was the final result. Disappointment at home again for Newcastle…but at least it wasn’t another loss.