A-League: Melbourne City and MacArthur draw

Melbourne City’s bet on the game with injured striker Jamie McLaren did not materialize: on Sunday evening, the leaders of the A-League tied with MacArthur (1: 1) at Campbelltown Stadium.

Despite not being selected by Socceroos manager Graham Arnold for Australia’s two-game series against Ecuador starting in Sydney on Friday night due to a broken toe, McLaren was still considered fit enough to play for an injured City team.

It is understood that Arnold blessed McLaren and City manager Rado Vidosic to pick the Socceroos striker despite missing out on the national team.

However, although McLaren worked hard, he struggled with his injury at times and was not at his usual strength in front of goal.

He was also not helped by any sort of routine serve, especially in stoppage time when he was completely invisible in the Bulls’ box, but he was let down by a bad pass from teammate and Socceroo fellow Marco Tilio.

McLaren was also disappointed early in the second half when he thought he had earned City a penalty after being fouled by MacArthur defender Jonathan Aspropotamitis.

However, after initially pointing to the spot, referee Chris Beath called off the penalty after a VAR check showed McLaren was in an offside position.

With the score 1-1 in the 89th minute, City thought they had a chance to score the winning goal when Beat pointed to a penalty again, this time on what he believed was a foul by Ivan Vujca MacArthur on Aiden O’Neill. .

However, luck was once again on the side of the Bulls when Beat again reversed his decision after being advised by VAR to view footage of the incident.

Therefore, “City” had to be content with a share of points.

After beating second-placed Adelaide United early in the round, City’s lead over the Reds has been reduced to four points, but Vidosic’s men still have a game in hand.

“I am so proud of my boys. They tried so hard,” Vidosic said in an interview with Paramount+.

“You make your own luck and it was just one of those nights where the passing was maybe too hard or we were a little selfish in those situations or the shots were blocked.”

Despite the play, MacArthur, whose special pink jerseys will be auctioned off for charity Sony Foundation Australia, took the lead in the 26th minute.

A poor defense against City centre-back Curtis Goode allowed MacArthur striker Al Hassan Touré to push forward into the nearly empty half of the away side.

Despite being chased by linebacker O’Neal, Toure showed great composure to feed unnamed teammate Jason Romero, who scored his first A-League goal.

Only the woodwork kept City from equalizing in the 36th minute when a long-range shot from captain Scott Jamison hit the crossbar.

However, City eventually equalized in the 66th minute when Aspropotamitis turned a low cross from young star Jordan Bos into his own net.

Originally published as Jamie McLaren struggles with toe injury as Melbourne City pinned by MacArthur