Mitch Mallia and Joel Chianese scored two goals each as Sydney FC registered its first victory of the Italian tour with a 5-3 win over an Udinese youth squad at Stadio Comunale Picchi in Jesolo.
Coach Frank Farina used the match to completely rotate the squad with the players who did not start last start against Padova, given an opportunity to gain much-needed match fitness in hot and steamy conditions in front of 3,502 fans.
Pascal Bosschaart put his nine-month injury nightmare to rest to play 60 minutes in a comfortable performance at the centre of defence, while Terry McFlynn, Mallia, Chianese, Ali Abbas, Ivan Necevski, Peter Triantis, Tiago Calvano, Daniel Petkovski and Jacob Tratt all started the match, as did Manuel Marschel, who is on trial at the club.
Sydney FC overcame an early goal from Udinese in the second minute but struck back almost immediately and within 10 minutes had taken a 2-1 lead with goals from Mallia and Marschel getting the ball rolling.
When Chianese scored his first goal in the 40th minute, the Sky Blues were in control of possession and the match, but a late slip up in the shadows of half time saw the teams go to the break with Sydney FC leading 3-2.
The scores were level at 3-3 immediately after the break but second half goals to Mallia and Chianese saw Sydney FC register a well deserved 5-3 win.
The crowd of 3,502 at the Stadio Comunale Picchi in Jesolo also saw the appearance of Alessandro Del Piero for the final 10 minutes of the match and they weren’t disappointed with some silky touches in his short cameo.
The Sydney FC squad will have a rest day before a return of the double sessions leading into back-to-back matches against Vicenza (13 August) and A.S. Cittadella (14 August), where Farina will again give all players substantial game time.
Tottenham Hotspur dealt a heavy blow to Fulham's Premier League survival hopes with a 3-1 win over its the relegation-threatened London neighbour on Saturday.