Melbourne Victory fell just short against Sydney FC on Thursday night, despite a sensational free-kick scored by Jake Brimmer.
Head coach Tony Popovic made three changes to his starting XI, with Roderick Miranda and Kadete both returning to the lineup, whilst Nishan Velupillay made his first start of the season.
The game was a tense affair in the opening exchanges, with both sides desperate for three points to reignite their respective campaigns.
Nishan Velupillay looked dangerous early, showing plenty of individual brilliance with crosses and runs from the right wing.
Victory began to assert themselves after 20 minutes, building the pressure on the visitors.
The breakthrough came soon after, as Jake Brimmer unleashed an incredible free-kick from long range to power Victory into the lead.
A moment of magic from the midfield maestro, giving the home side a much needed early lead.
Sydney though hit back soon after, with Max Burgess’ strike from outside the box levelling the score.
A half which will be remembered for its spectacular goals, the teams headed into the sheds at 1-1.
The Sky Blues struck again early in the second half, as Adam Le Fondre cleverly slid the ball under the onrushing Matt Acton, handing the visitors the lead.
Victory began throwing more numbers forward as they searched for a way back into the contest, but the visitors’ defence continued to hold firm.
Popovic utilised his bench extensively in the final 20 minutes, with Will Wilson, Stefan Nigro, Lleyton Brooks and Tomi Juric all given runs in an effort to breakdown the Sydney backline.
Wilson nearly snatched an equaliser in the final minute, but a fingertip save from Andrew Redmayne denied the youngster.
Victory could not find a way through in the end, succumbing to another tight defeat.
Jake Brimmer’s wonder goal was certainly the highlight of the evening…
Back-to-back losses means Victory remain at the foot of the table.
Isuzu UTE A-League 2022/23 Round 14
Melbourne Victory 1 (Brimmer 26′)
Sydney FC 2 (Burgess 32′, Le Fondre 52′)
Victory return to AAMI Park next time out as they welcome Wellington Phoenix on Friday 3rd February, kicking off at 7:45pm AEDT.