Newcastle Jets fly out of Coffs with A-League campaign boost
AN ANDREW Nabbout brace helped boost the confidence of the Newcastle Jets and unsettled Melbourne City ahead of its hometown derby at the weekend.
Nabbout's two goal tally secured a 2-1 win over Melbourne City in Coffs Harbour on Friday for the feature match in the Westfield W-League and Hyundai A-League double header.
A penalty awarded to City skipper Bruno Fornaroli proved little consolation.
The Jets have made it no secret they are aiming to make the top six on the ladder and earn a finals berth.
The win pushed Coffs' nearest A-League team into sixth place and dropped Melbourne City into fourth ahead of round 18.
Jets' head coach Mark Jones said his team had no reason to change they way they played after "six or seven weeks” of good football.
Jones pointed out the strength of the Jets' counter attack ability which proved crucial in the win despite Melbourne City dominating possession and position.
Melbourne City coach Michael Valkanis said his side's travel plans were not perfect after their plane was unable to land on Thursday due to wet weather. Melbourne City landed in Coffs on Friday morning.
"At the end of the day we played, we dictated the terms of play,” he said.
"We played a team tat defended with fate and nine players behind the ball.”
Valkanis said he believed his team could match up to Melbourne Victory, which sit second on the ladder, in Saturday's derby.
"We won't stop, we'll keep going. We're playing well enough to get better results.”
In the W-League clash, Melbourne City reversed the result of the men with a 2-0 win over the Jets.
The two sides left for the dressing sheds tied up in a 0-0 deadlock but Melbourne City soon changed that in the second half with a strike by Erika Tymrak.
City's Amy Jackson slotted in another in extra time to knock the Jets out of the finals.
Melbourne City will meet minor premiers Canberra United in Sunday's semi-final at GIO Stadium.