Team Wellington see off spirited Lossi with 2-1 O-League win

Team Wellington have come from one goal down to beat Lossi in the O-League on Tuesday. 

The ASB Premiership champions trailed 1-0 at halftime at the QBE Stadium Oval in Auckland before eventually prevailing 2-1. 

With Lossi coming off a 5-1 loss to Hekari United on Saturday, it was thought Team Wellington's win would come easy.

But they laboured through the first half unable to break down the New Caledonian side's defence.

Chris Bale had a good chance to grab the lead for Team Wellington in the 26th minute after a sweeping counterattack, but his scuffed shot from the edge of the box rolled well wide of the mark.

For the most part, Team Wellington's tempo was too slow to trouble what was an organised Lossi team.

Lossi defended deep and in numbers, and did well to deny Team Wellington any time or space on the ball.

It was a good piece of play which earned them a shock lead in the 41st minute.

They played a neat one-two in the midfield before a through ball was hit to Jim Ouka, who had slipped the marking of Team Wellington centre back and captain Bill Robertson.

Ouka charged towards Basalaj's goal and struck a top left-foot finish which gave Basalaj no chance.

They kept the lead until halftime, but lost it just two minutes into the second spell.

Lossi goalkeeper Michel Hne was unable to hold Alex Feneridis' powerful free kick from the edge of the box and Tom Jackson tapped in the follow up.

But Lossi came back at them and hit the crossbar with a header from Romain Painbeni just two minutes later.

Tensions started to rise thereafter as some robust challenges were put in, mainly from Lossi. 

It was another scrappy goal that helped Team Wellington gain the lead in the 64th minute.

Jackson hooked a looping cross to the top of the box, which took one bounce before Mario Barcia rose between two Lossi defenders to send a looping header over Hne. 

Team Wellington had chances to seal the win, but were unable to finish them off. 

Chris Bale had a brain explosion after 88 minutes, picking up a second yellow card for a needless tackle. The referee initially forgot he booked Bale earlier in the game, but remembered in time to send him off.

He will now miss his side's crucial clash against Hekari on Saturday. 

Hekari beat Suva 3-0 in the early game on Tuesday, meaning Team Wellington will need to beat them to be assured of a semifinal spot.

A draw would see them finish second in the group on goal difference, but may still be good enough to see them qualify as the best runner-up from the three groups.


Team Wellington 2 (Tom Jackson 47', Mario Barcia 64') Lossi 1 (Jim Ouka 41'). HT: 0-1

 - Stuff