Oh Mandi, you came and gave Welly the lead early, but they’re less phoenix and more bottom feeders like turkeys. In a game that was weirder than Riverdale Season 2, Adelaide came out 3-1 victors during the round 5 clash despite Wellington opening the scoring.
Pre-game Kurz reported that the fixture was the most challenging away trip he has done as both player and coach due to the distance. Adelaide prepared well by conjuring up several weather warnings for gale force winds, with typical crippling power outages, in the two days prior to departure to replicate match day conditions.
Galloway opened fire first against his old club, by reporting that his defection from Wellington to Adelaide “was to come to a classy, competitive team”. Yes that’s right, we’re a classy pissant town, we even just got a H&M you know. In contrast, Wellington opened fire through the use of safe smoke, in which The Thorndon Terrace had special jumpers made up for the occasion depicting a hooded figure holding a ripped flare in each hand, with the slogan “Who are ya?!”…I dunno, the Safe Smoke Squad? The Well-E cigarettes? The small puffs of yellow safe smoke were about as lame as when your mum makes you take your younger sibling out with you to meet your friends. What perhaps had more visual impact was Wellington’s choice to have a burning effigy of a Phoenix at the ground predicting the impending crash and burn over the ensuing 90 minutes.
The opening line-ups saw some crucial outs for both sides, Wellington were Singh-less whilst Adelaide’s Jakobsen had taken a leaf out of Baba’s book and pulled up sore despite the international break, allowing for a Regan start. Adelaide also appeared to not start with a full-time striker, with AP benched for Kitto.
Adelaide started off the first half as frustrated as a teenage boy with a lagging internet connection. A 14th minute miscommunication between Izzo, Regan, and Lia over who was actually going to clear the ball from a Wellington corner (all of them apparently), allowed Spaniard Mandi (Not Sí Señor Sí) to open the account for the Nix.
A glimpse of Adelaide brilliance came in the 26th minute with Isaías almost replicating his famous grand final spot kick goal, however he was denied by a brilliant save from Kurto.
And just when Adelaide looked to have completely lost their mojo, normality was restored with United’s fan favourite injury-replacement signing Owen Goal appearing in the 45th to level the playing field. Okay it was Doyle with a cracking header to bounce over the head of Kurto and into the back of the net.
Adelaide came out of the sheds firing in the second half, with Doyle gifting Adelaide more than just a goal, but also momentum and confidence. The man-bun of Ken Ilsö chalked its name up on the scoreboard following another perfect cross from Marrone in the 47th to give the visitors the lead.
Only 9 minutes later we saw a player setting themselves up for a hattrick…but who? The ball found the back of the net for Adelaide to extend the lead to 3-1, with the final touch initially credited to Doyle once more. However, in the absence of a four-sided coin the higher ups decided to shockingly use VAR for its intended purpose of mistaken identity in one of the only situations where a player would be breathing a sigh of relief for having a goal chalked off courtesy of the technology. Ken Ilso had his second to put him in second place for Adelaide’s Golden Boot race…yes, in a team without a prolific striker, it really is that easy.
Adelaide peppering the box in the second half became all too much for Rudan, who in his match day Terminator-inspired jacket, did his best Arnold Schwarzenegger show of strength impression by kicking out the plastic wall of the dug out. Serious moment here though, if Babbel was sent to the stands weeks earlier during the Sydney Derby for some irate words, surely this also constitutes a Hasta la vista down the tunnel.
In the end, Wellington blew it by letting Adelaide back in the game, sending them precariously close to the bottom of the ladder. And based on performances like this from the Nix, we can also see why Galloway also said he hasn’t regretted a single thing about moving to Adelaide #noragrets