Words: Thibault Berthier | Image: Duncan Mckenna
Gold Coast City forward Rhys Saunders said his side's eagerness made the difference in their 1-0 win over Brisbane Olympic that sent them top of the PlayStation 4 NPL Queensland ladder.
A Sam Smith goal secured the result for City at Duncan Mckenna Field on Saturday night.
The top-of-the-table clash started tightly with neither side giving much away until Olympic youngster Zander Guy was sent off for a two-footed challenge in the 65th minute.
From there City gained the upper hand and capitalised when Sam Smith headed home Roman Hofmann’s cross at the back post in the 79th minute to seal a 1-0 win for the hosts.
Speaking post-match, Saunders said his sides will-to-win got them over the line in Saturday’s match.
“The eagerness to get the result separated us from Olympic, we were just more physical, there were lots of physical battles but we came away with the second ball and got on top.”
“It’s great to come home with three points, the red card probably ended up killing them,” Saunders said.
The win gives City a three-point buffer at the top the table, ahead of their nearest rivals Brisbane Olympic and Brisbane Strikers.
“It’s a huge result, obviously it gives us a three point bonus at the top of the ladder, and with the games to come hopefully we can really separate ourselves in the coming weeks,” Saunders said.
Saunders who made his first appearance for the club since returning from a stint in America said he is loving being back at GCC.
“I got 25 minutes at the end there, fitness obviously needs a bit of work but I felt good, felt sharp, and I just look forward to getting more game time with the boys and being back on the coast.”
“I’ve loved being back, I had two sessions mid-week, got to see all the boys again, finally got to play back with the boys so can’t complain, just looking forward to the rest of the season now.”
City’s next PlayStation 4 National Premier League’s fixture is away to Western Pride on May 13.
PlayStation 4 National Premier Leagues Queensland 2017 – Round 9
Saturday, April 29
Duncan Mckenna Field, Palm Beach
Gold Coast City FC – 1 (Sam SMITH 79’)
Brisbane Olympic FC – 0
Gold Coast City FC Squad: 1. Matt STEIN, 2. Riley DILLON, 4. Martin VAZQUEZ, 5. Matthew SCHMIDT, 6. Roman HOFMANN, 7. Justyn MCKAY, 8. Curtis STOLLERY (10. Jacob BOUTOUBIA 79’), 9. Jarrod KYLE (12. Rhys SAUNDERS 63’), 15. Eoghan MURPHY, 21. Sam SMITH (3. Oskar DILLON 89’), 22. Jaiden WALKER
Unused subs: 16. Thomas MILLER, 20. Garion VOGEL