Adelaide moves to top as Sydney fails

Adelaide moves to top as Sydney fails

SYDNEY - Agence France-Presse
Adelaide moves to top as Sydney fails

Sydney FC, which boasts Italian superstar Alessandro Del Piero (C), suffered a heavy 7-2 demolition at the hands of Central Coast Mariners. EPA photo

Adelaide United moved into the outright lead at the top of Australia’s A-League yesterday as Sydney FC disintegrated in the absence of its Italian superstar Alessandro Del Piero in the fifth round of fixtures.

Dario Vidosic’s brilliant free kick in the third minute was enough to secure a 1-0 win for Adelaide and inflict a second straight home loss on back-to-back champions Brisbane Roar.

The loss continued Brisbane’s worst start to an A-League season and left them anchored near the bottom of the standings.

Sydney FC is set for a week of soul searching after its 7-2 humiliation dished out by second-placed Central Coast Mariners in Gosford on Nov. 3.

The Sky Blues were without Italian World Cup winner Del Piero and a handful of other first-team regulars as the Mariners ran riot with Daniel McBreen grabbing a hat-trick.

Del Piero, who scored three goals in his opening four games for Sydney, was ruled out with tight hamstrings.

Emile Heskey’s goal-scoring run came to a halt as Perth Glory secured a 3-2 victory over Newcastle Jets in Perth on Nov. 3.

Heskey went into the match in hot form after scoring four goals in his previous three matches, with the Jets winning all of them.

The former Liverpool star was barely seen in the first half as goals from Steve McGarry and Nick Ward gave Perth a 2-1 lead at the break.

A clever header from Heskey in the 73rd minute gifted an equaliser to Josh Mitchell, but Glory substitute Chris Harold ensured the home side took all three points when he slammed home the winner in the 85th minute.

League newcomers Western Sydney Wanderers posted a second-successive victory with a 2-1 win over Melbourne Heart at Parramatta Stadium on Friday.

Mark Bridge, who grabbed the club’s first-ever goal to secure victory over Brisbane the previous week, remains the only Wanderers’ player to have scored after Heart defender Patrick Gerhardt gifted the hosts their second of the match with an own goal.

Croatian striker Josip Tadic pulled one back for the Heart in the second half.

Melbourne Victory hosts Wellington Phoenix in the remaining match of round five today.