A-League: Wellington Phoenix snap skid with win over Newcastle Jets

  • 01/03/2021

Wellington Phoenix have dispatched Newcastle Jets 2-0 at McDonald Jones Stadium to record their second win of the A-League season on Sunday.

The result snaps a four-game winless streak and moves the side off the bottom of the A-League ladder.

Returning from a two-game suspension due to his red card against the Mariners, David Ball quickly made his presence felt, latching on to a pinpoint ball from Ulises Davila and getting a deflection off a defender to put the Phoenix ahead in the 22nd minute.

In the 53rd minute, NZ U-20s star Waine doubled the Phoenix lead with a long-range effort, after a deflected pass fell perfectly into his stride.

Coach Ufuk Talay was delighted with his team's character, particularly on defence, while singling out the goal-scorers for their efforts.

"They were very disciplined and they defended very well," Talay says. "Newcastle had a lot of ball, but not in areas where they could hurt us.

"I thought [Ball] was exceptional tonight. The amount of work [he] does on and off the ball especially. It’s always nice for your strikers to score, and I’m happy that he’ll grow from that.

"I'm also very pleased for [Waine], I'm sure he's very ecstatic about the goal he scored, he worked hard for the team as well."

Talay hopes the result will help his side - which is also dealing with the unique challenge of being based abroad - build some momentum.

"It's been tough," he says. 

"The boys have played three games in seven days, so the effort and the energy they put out tonight shows a lot about this team and about their character and the direction we want to head into.

"Obviously a win lifts the spirits of the team and builds confidence. 

"Three points was the most important thing tonight, and that’ll build confidence for the players in the next games."

The Phoenix now return 'home' to take on first-placed Perth Glory - who are currently riding a three-game win streak - on March 7.