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Dec 05, 2021   |  6:14PM AET

Liberty A-League report: Victory 5-1 Adelaide

Liberty A-League report: Victory 5-1 Adelaide

Melbourne Victory made a flying start to the Liberty A-League season, beating Adelaide United 5-1 on Sunday.

Summary

Victory produced a dominant first half at AAMI Park, where Lia Privitelli, Kayla Morrison, Claudia Bunge and Catherine Zimmerman scored.

Fiona Worts pulled a goal back for Adelaide before Privitelli completed her brace to give the defending champions three points to begin the campaign.

The only downside for Victory was an injury to Morrison, who was forced off in the first half.

Victory made a bright start and was rewarded with the opening goal in the 10th minute.

Privitelli’s high pressure forced a mistake from Adelaide goalkeeper Annalee Grove and the attacker capitalised to tuck away her third Victory goal.

While Emily Condon went close for Adelaide, Privitelli was denied by Grove in the 17th minute after a blistering counter-attack which saw the 27-year-old played in by Kyra Cooney-Cross following a nice pass from Courtney Nevin, who was making her Victory debut.

But Victory would double the lead in the 19th minute after Zimmerman was brought down in the area by Matilda McNamara.

Morrison’s powerful spot-kick was saved by Grove, but the Victory captain put away the rebound.

Victory made it 3-0 four minutes later as Cooney-Cross’ corner was flicked on by Zimmerman and Bunge finished neatly from an angle at the back post.

Worts tested Victory goalkeeper Casey Dumont on numerous occasions while Harriet Withers – also on her Victory debut – hit the post from a Privitelli cross before the half-hour mark.

Adelaide hit the crossbar before Victory’s fourth, Cooney-Cross producing a wonderful run before passing to Zimmerman, who found the corner with a volley from 20 yards.

Dumont was tested by Worts again early in the second half, the goalkeeper tipping a header from the forward around her post.

The Victory shot-stopper bravely smothered at the feet of Worts approaching the hour-mark, but the Adelaide forward pulled one back for the visitor soon after.

But Victory restored its four-goal lead through Privitelli, who headed in from close range after Adelaide was unable to deal with an Amy Jackson corner.

The host was relatively comfortable in seeing out the win, picking up three points to begin the campaign.

Key moment

Player in focus

Privitelli had only scored two Victory goals prior to Sunday, but managed that tally against the Reds. The attacker played with high energy early and got her reward.

Implications

A fast start is crucial in the A-League Women and Victory managed just that, and in quite the style, dominating Adelaide early on and capitalising on its chances. The injury to Morrison, however, added a sour point.

Result

Liberty A-League 2021/22 Round 1
Melbourne Victory 5
(Lia Privitelli 10’/69′, Kayla Morrison 19′, Claudia Bunge 23′, Catherine Zimmerman 39′)
Adelaide United 1
(Fiona Worts 65′)

Melbourne Victory: Dumont (gk); Doran (Zois 86′), Bunge, Morrison (c) (Robers 42′), Nevin (Markovski 46′); Barbieri, Jackson; Privitelli (Murphy 76′), Cooney-Cross, Withers; Zimmerman.
Adelaide United: Grove (gk); Isabel Hodgson (c) (Taranto 89′), McNamara, Tonkin, Emily Hodgson; Sasaki, Condon, Omiya (Stanbury 46′); Evans (Dawber 63′), Hayward (Varley 90+4′), Worts.

Yellow cards: Stanbury 88′
Red cards:
Nil
Attendance: TBA
Venue: AAMI Park

Next up

Victory is back at AAMI Park next week, facing City in a Melbourne Derby on December 12.