Waitakere United continued their season revival by getting one over rivals Auckland City yesterday, winning the Super City derby 1-0 to hand the ASB Premiership leaders their first defeat of the season.
Only a matter of weeks ago, Waitakere looked in danger of missing the playoffs with a third straight defeat but after a much-needed 6-1 win over Wanderers SC last week, they earned a vital three points at Fred Taylor Park.
Maksim Manko, who recently signed with Waitakere from WaiBOP United in the transfer window, scored the only goal of the match in the third minute. Auckland went into the match missing six players through suspensions and injuries but had a sniff of a comeback when Waitakere defender Brian Shelley was sent off with a second yellow card with 12 minutes remaining. However, Waitakere held on to move into third spot.
Auckland remained top of the competition, by goal difference, and still hold some bragging rights over Waitakere by continuing to lead the Super City head-to-head clashes 14-10.
Elsewhere, Aaron Clapham scored his seventh goal of the season to move into lead spot of the golden boot award as Canterbury United recorded a 2-0 win over Southern United at ASB Football Park in Christchurch. Russell Kamo opened the scoring for the home side just after halftime and Clapham doubled the lead in the 55th minute. The win, along with Auckland's defeat, saw Canterbury move into a share of top spot with the southerners having played an extra game.
Team Wellington moved into the top four with a 6-1 thrashing of Hawkes Bay United. Charlie Henry and Hamish Watson both bagged doubles for Wellington as the home side scored all six goals in the second half after trailing 1-0 at the break.
Sean Morris gave the visitors the early lead from the penalty spot.
On Saturday, WaiBOP United beat Wanderers SC 3-1 with Jack McNab scoring a double to leave the Wanderers cemented on the bottom of the table.