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Feb 10, 2014   |  12:00AM AET

Bingham brace not enough for mini Mariners

Bingham brace not enough for mini Mariners

Chris Cristaldo’s treble helped Melbourne Victory to a 5-2 triumph over the Central Coast Mariners in the National Youth League at Lakeside Stadium on Sunday.

Chris Cristaldo’s treble helped Melbourne Victory to a 5-2 triumph over the Central Coast Mariners in the National Youth League at Lakeside Stadium on Sunday.

The young winger scored a first-half hat-trick as Victory came from behind twice after Mariners’ captain Josh Bingham snagged an early brace.

Jesse Makarounas scored both goals in the second half as Victory coasted to a comfortable win.

The match began at a high tempo with the Mariners trying to carefully construct moves while the Victory attempted to break with pace and expose the away team’s back four.

After Cristaldo missed two gilt-edged opportunities, the Mariners took the lead through Bingham on 11 minutes after the skipper picked up Dom Ferguson’s pass and drove a low shot into the corner from outside the area.

Nine minutes later, Cristaldo atoned for his wasted chances by controlling Connor Pain’s pull back and blasting the ball into the net from close range.

Victory started to get on top but were set back in the 31st minute when captain Luc Jeggo brought down Tom Slater in the penalty area.

Bingham stepped up on the spot to send the Victory goalkeeper the wrong way and secure his brace.

It looked as if the scores would remain level at the half-time break until the Mariners were undone by an error between defender Liam O-Dell and goalkeeper Tonu Liiband.

O-Dell passed the ball square across the goals to Liiband, who took a poor touch, allowing Cristaldo to nick the ball and complete his hat-trick.

The home side came out the sheds with all the momentum and extended their advantage five minutes after the restart.

Pain fed Makarounas after some excellent work down the left flank, and the former Perth Glory player finished clinically into the bottom corner.

Central Coast tried to work their way back into the game but were constantly threatened by Victory on the counter-attack.

Pain contrived to miss several chances to get on the scoresheet while substitute Anthony Proia kept on getting into good positions but failed to have the composure to finish.

However, Proia’s parried shot allowed Makarounas to grab a double from point blank range in the dying stages of the match.

Three points for Victory see them move up to fourth position in the standings while the Mariners remain on the bottom of the table, three points behind Perth Glory.

Melbourne Victory 5 (Cristaldo 20′, 33′, 40′, Makarounas 50′, 90+2′)
Central Coast Mariners FC 2 (Bingham 11′, 31′ (pen))

Melbourne Victory: 1. Keegan Coulter (Gk), 3. Milos Ridesic, 4. James Karvelis (13. Damien Miskulin 60′), 5. Dylan Murnane, 6. Jordan Brown, 7. Chris Cristaldo (14. Anthony Proia 60′), 8. Luc Jeggo (C), 9. Jesse Makarounas, 11. Connor Pain, 15. Jason Geria, 18. Francesco Stella (12. Anthony Duzel 60′)

Central Coast Mariners: 4. Matt Sim, 5. Liam O-Dell (2. Jacob Esposito 45′), 6. Jesse Curran, 7. Dillon Vorster (14. Steve Whyte 57′), 8. Glen Trifiro, 9. Patrick Dixon, 10. Dominic Ferguson, 11. Josh Bingham (C), 12. Tonu Liiband (Gk), 13. Hayden Morton, 15. Tom Slater (16. Daniel McFarlane 61′)