Sydney 'outstanding' in first half - Arnold

Having extended their unbeaten streak to 20 games - including the last match of last season - the Sky Blues earned plenty of praise from their boss

Despite a poor surface, Sydney FC were "outstanding" in the first half of their 3-1 win over Wellington Phoenix, according to coach Graham Arnold.

The Sky Blues moved 12 points clear in the A-League on Thursday night thanks to an early blitz of the Phoenix on a bumpy Allianz Stadium pitch.

Rhyan Grant - who was labelled "unbelievable" by Sydney midfielder Milos Ninkovic - opened the scoring in the third minute and then set up Bobo for the second 19 minutes later to complete a brilliant team goal.

Sydney opened up the Phoenix defence with a string of one-touch passes before Bobo released Grant on the right and the right-back returned the favour with a dinked cross that the Brazilian striker headed home.

"It was a fantastic performance, the first half especially was outstanding and that second goal was something like a training drill," Arnold told reporters after the game.

"On another night we could have had five or six, but that's where we're aiming to be.

"I keep saying we're only 50, 60, 70 per cent of where we'll end up as a team."

Sydney FC 3 Wellington Phoenix 1

Sydney's boss added of his attacking quartet of Bobo, Ninkovic, Alex Brosque and Filip Holosko: "The front four are getting goals and one day, when they take all of their chances, the score line is going to be real heavy."

Ninkovic, who scored Sydney's third goal, was full of praise for Grant, whose energetic display down the right flank caught the eye of many once again.  

Rhyan Grant Sydney FC v Adelaide United A-League 20012017

"He was unbelievable," Ninkovic told Fox Sports.

As for himself, the Serbian playmaker added: "When I feel fresh, I can do everything.

"But when I'm tired, like last week [against Roar]…

"But tonight we showed a great performance, we played very well and to be honest Wellington played good and should score one more." 

Sydney's lead over second-placed Melbourne Victory is the equivalent of four wins ahead of the Big V's trip to Newcastle Jets on Monday night. 

Ninkovic wasn't entirely happy with Sydney's display but applauded the way they started the match

"We need to play like the first half," he said.

"Keep the ball and create chances and we scored three goals." 

Sydney will face Western Sydney Wanderers in a derby next Saturday. 


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