Westgate is looking forward to a week’s break after encountering some turbulence in the past two Football Federation Victoria men’s state league 2 north-west matches.
Coach Nik Kovacevic said the football-free Queen’s Birthday weekend will come at the right time for the fourth-placed Westgate after enduring back-to-back losses for the first time this season.
Westgate suffered its biggest defeat of the season on Saturday, going down 4-1 in a shock to Hoppers Crossing on the road at Grange Reserve.
“It’s a good time to freshen up and reload,” Kovacevic said.
“I’m confident we’ll bounce back after the break.
“I’ve got good belief in us.”
Despite the lopsided scoreline, Westgate walked away content it had played good enough football to win the game.
The distinct difference between the sides was Hoppers Crossing’s ruthlessness in front of goal.
After Steve Dimcevski put Westgate ahead early, Hoppers piled on four unanswered goals, including an equaliser in the first half and three more in the second half.
But Westgate was not without its chances with its stats showing it doubled the home side’s shots on goal 12 to six.
“We dominated for a lot of it, but they scored the goals,” Kovacevic lamented.
“They scored four goals from those six shots and hit the crossbar twice.
“They were very efficient, they were very clinical today and you’ve got to pay them respect for that.
“We missed four from inside the six-yard box.
“That’s football, if you don’t put a team away, there’s always that chance they will come back.”
Westgate’s cause was not helped by the sending off of striker Vedran Stojanovic in the second half.
Stojanovic was brandished two yellow cards in quick succession, which bemused Kovacevic.
“We had a player sent off and we’re still wondering why,” he said.
“We had a penalty turned down and we’re wondering why.
“It was one of those days for us today.”
Stojanovic will have an automatic one-match ban as a result.
Westgate looked dangerous all game in an attacking sense, without having scoreboard impact.
Stojanovic, Dimcevski and Ellis Davies had the Hoppers defence on the back foot for the most part.
Westgate’s defence has been watertight this season, but there is slight concern over their concession of six goals in the past two weeks.
Prior to that, Westgate had only conceded six goals in nine games.
“It’s a hard one to pick out because I don’t think we’re doing too much wrong defensively,” Kovacevic said.
Westgate will return to action on June 15 with a home game against Mill Park.
Albion Rovers stayed equal top of the ladder after a 3-0 win over Geelong Rangers.
Adamson Ajayi, Kemal Irdem and Nathan Long were the Rovers’ goal-scorers.
In men’s state league 1, Sydenham Park eked out a 1-0 victory over Brimbank Stallions.
North Sunshine Eagles came back from a goal down at half-time to beat Caroline Springs George Cross 4-2.
Keilor Park featured in a Monday night game against Whittlesea United with scores unavailable when Star Weekly went to press.
In men’s state league 3, Western Eagles played out a nil-all draw with Essendon United, while Westvale was thumped 5-0 by Sunbury United.
In women’s state league 2 north-west, top-of-the-ladder Spring Hills had an unforgettable night, annihilating Maribyrnong Swifts Silvers 10-0.
St Albans Saints had an upset 3-1 win over a second-placed Hume City.