Nix's Costa Ricans carve up Reds

A surging Wellington Phoenix held on to claim a 2-1 victory against Adelaide United that has them knocking on the door of the A-League top six. 

Costa Rican duo Carlos Hernandez and Kenny Cunningham netted before half-time to set up the crucial win in front of 18,506 spectators at Eden Park.

Previously unbeaten in seven matches, a frustrated Reds outfit will return to Australia having missed the chance to move to fourth, with Awer Mabil's last-minute consolation coming too late for the tired visitors to mount a late challenge.

Busy all afternoon, Hernandez scored the first goal from a penalty and created the other in the shadow of half-time for Cunningham, who produced a slick finish.

The result boosts the Phoenix to just a point behind the Reds, who had started the round in sixth place.

Another major talking point from the match was Stein Huysegems' double blunder in front of goal just before half-time.

Within 10 seconds of madness, the Belgian striker hit the post and then the crossbar after a brilliant ball from Hernandez had completely cut United open.

Huysegems had earlier been foiled by keeper Eugene Galekovic after being put in a one-on-one situation by another great Hernandez pass.

When the ball ended up back in the penalty area, Hernandez and defender Daniel Bowles collided and referee Peter Green pointed to the spot.

Hernandez stood up, cheekily winked at Galekovic, before sending the keeper the wrong way.

At 44 minutes Hernandez again bobbed up to hurt the Reds.

In heavy traffic on halfway, he managed to get a ball to Cunningham, who sped down the touchline before cutting back to fire a shot into the corner of the net.

Although the Reds lifted briefly early in the second half, the match always belonged to Ernie Merrick's charges.

Wellington was the superior team for most of the match, and their fresh legs meant they fired six shots on target compared to Adelaide United's two.

Wellington Phoenix 2 (Hernandez 22, Cunningham 44)
Adelaide United 1 (Awer Mabil 89)

Crowd: 18,506 at Eden Park



Just over 18,000 Jack. By the way I reject the Headline guys. 'Carve up' would seem to suggest. It was pretty one sided. The penalty was a clumsy error on Bowles' part and the goal was scored by a player who recieved the ball in a clear offside position. By the way. What happenend to everyone. Your 'newness' here is clearly put a lot of people offside. Well done Wellington though. You guys are in a good place again and thats good for the whole league

Agree the heading is deceptive.
Agree about this new site - no one comments here any more. It's rubbish. I used to enjoy the opinions and banter.
As for Wellington, well done, and the commentators are always amusingly provincial.

Good first half by the Nix. Boxall and Cunningham both suspended for new week which wont do us any favours.
Miss all the comments here, hope 442 realise that everyone is disappointed in the new site, a match used to have pages of comments, now we are lucky to get 5 comments

Cunningham wasn't offside, the cb was miles back keeping him onside. watch a replay :)

Used to come here just for the comments now it's a ghost town..someone fucked up

Auckland can get 18000 why we're the knights such a flop?

Remember people its 18k because it's one off game. If Auckland are to have a regular team, they will struggle to get 4k a game.

Oh, and I think one of the reasons for no one here is the article's comments are not linked to Forum like they used to.

Totally agree tis website is shite.
If they were trying to please people who mainly want to see what is happening overseas they succeeded.
When I open this site the first thing I want to see is total A/League coverage and nothing else .
I don't like this new site,please make changes or else nobody will care.

Totally agree! :(
This site used to be fun...
But well done Nix u looking dangerous!

Doesn't matter either way. Goal chalked up on the scoreboard. The only opinion that matters is the Refs and they tend to even out.