Navy blues start year with a bang

Central Leader - - SPORT - By JEREMY RUANE

Auck­land City Foot­ball Club is quickly get­ting back into the win­ning groove with two away tri­umphs af­ter the ASB Premier­ship re­sumed last week.

The navy blues kicked off the year fol­low­ing their FIFA Club World Cup Fi­nals ex­cur­sion with a clash against Waikato FC, who were put to the sword 4-1 at Cen­ten­nial Park.

Daniel Ko­priv­cic bagged the first goal in the third minute, but the hosts grad­u­ally got back into the match and de­served their equaliser when Waikato’s Sam Mar­getts net­ted on the half-hour mark.

But there was only one team in it by the sec­ond spell, with City re­gain- ing the lead four min­utes into the sec­ond half.

Manel Ex­pos­ito thun­dered home a shot into the top cor­ner be­fore he and Ko­priv­cic net­ted an­other pair of goals a minute ei­ther side of the hour mark.

Can­ter­bury United dom­i­nated the early stages against Auck­land in Sun­day’s match in Christchurch.

An­drew Barton headed Can­ter­bury in front from an Aaron Clapham cross in the 12th minute.

City grad­u­ally worked their way back into the con­test and drew level 14 min­utes later when Alex Fener­idis headed home a Luis Cor­rales cross.

The hosts were fur­ther si­lenced seven min­utes into the sec­ond half when Ko­priv­cic dou­bled the vis­i­tors’ lead fol­low­ing some poor Can­ter­bury de­fend­ing.

The vis­i­tors even­tu­ally sealed the points 11 min­utes from time when sub­sti­tute Tade headed home a free-kick, ex­tend­ing their lead to the fi­nal 3-1 score­line.

City now lie sec­ond in the ta­ble, five points be­hind cross-town ri­vals Waitakere United but with a game in hand for Wai­tangi Day.

Go to cen­tral­leader.co.nz to watch high­lights from Auck­land City’s match against Waikato FC.

Go to cen­tral­leader.co.nz and click on Lat­est Edi­tion for a full match report and pho­tos.

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