Team Wellington went to the top of the ASB Premiership on Sunday with a 3-2 derby victory over the Wellington Phoenix at David Farrington Park.
First half goals from Ben Harris and Cole Peverley had the hosts ahead 2-0 at the break before a Blake Powell penalty had the Phoenix back in the contest.
But Matt Calcott’s team responded to the set back and James Musa added an insurance goal with an 85th minute header in the aftermath of a corner and it proved to be needed as Joel Stevens fired home for the Phoenix deep into stoppage time.
Earlier, Harris had the ball in the Phoenix net from a 12th minute free kick but it was ruled out for offside.
Just before the half hour mark Team Wellington again went close, James Musa seeing his header from a corner cleared off the line by James McGarry.
In the 33rd minute it was the turn of the Phoenix to have a goal ruled out for offside, this time Logan Rogerson denied by the assistant’s flag.
Soon after Team Wellington opened the scoring as Harris fired home a powerful drive after being set up by Andy Bevin.
Just before halftime the hosts were 2-0 ahead as captain Cole Peverley rifled home a left foot rocket from 20 yards out.
The Phoenix were denied twice in quick succession four minutes into the second half, Scott Basalaj producing an excellent double save to thwart Blake Powell in close and then Alex Rufer’s shot from distance.
Soon afterwards Powell again threatened but was denied by the post from a tight angle. A corner resulted and Powell then headed against the other post as the Phoenix continued to press for a way back into the contest.
But Powell wasn’t stopped for a fourth time in the 68th minute, the Phoenix player slotting home from the penalty spot after Bill Robertson was ruled to have fouled Sarpreet Singh in the area.
But the hosts responded and after they had a second goal ruled out for offside, Lewis Italiano was called into action twice in quick time to deny Bevin, the second an excellent save from the Team Wellington player’s volleyed effort.
The Team Wellington pressure continued and Matt Calcott’s side were rewarded with an insurance goal five minutes from time as Musa headed home after Italiano had saved an initial effort after a corner.
Joel Stevens did pull a goal back deep into stoppage time for the Phoenix but it was too late to leave any time to get back on level terms.
The results puts Team Wellington in top spot – ahead of Auckland City’s clash with WaiBOP United in Hamilton later on Sunday – in the ASB Premiership with four wins from five outings while the Phoenix remain in seventh position as the competition breaks for the holiday period.
ASB Premiership 2015-16 – Round 6
Sunday 20 December
Team Wellington 3-2 Wellington Phoenix (half: 2-0)
TW: Ben Harris 36’, Cole Peverley 45+1’, James Musa 85’
WP: Blake Powell (pen) 68’, Joel Stevens 90+6’