Action-packed Sydney A-League derby lives up to the hype.
Competition leaders Western Sydney Wanderers have had their 10 match A-League winning streak ended by their cross town rivals Sydney FC at a packed Parramatta Stadium.
While the points were shared after the teams finished deadlocked at 1-1, there was plenty of controversy to come from the game as both sides were reduced to 10 men.
Sydney lost captain Brett Emerton in the 56th minute when he was given a red card by referee Kris Griffiths-Jones for a clumsy challenge on Shannon Cole.
Sydney coach Frank Farina said the loss of the side’s skipper altered the course of the game which he believed was going according to script for the sky blues.
“I thought we had control,” Farina said.
“It was 1-0 before that and we were looking comfortable. That changed it for us.”
In time added on, Western Sydney’s Iacopo La Rocca was also given a straight red for striking Terry Antonis in the face, in an incident which could have affect the Wanderers in the lead up to their first tilt at the A-League finals series.
Italian superstar Alessandro Del Piero opened the scoring for Sydney FC in the 34th minute when he put his shot past Ante Covic at the far post despite being under heavy pressure.
It took the Wanderers until the 69th minute to find their equaliser, with Cole pulling off a classy free-kick, raising the hopes of the side able to taking their winning streak to 11.
Despite being forced to share the points, the draw has all but created history for the Wanderers who look assured of winning the Premier’s Plate in their first season in the league.
Western Sydney coach Tony Popovic said neither he or the playing group will dwell too much on the winning streak coming to an end, saying the title is the in club’s sights.