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Melbourne Victory stays top, City jump into third after A-League Women’s wins

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Melbourne Victory claimed their third win in three games to stay top of the A-League Women’s competition after a 3-2 defeat of Brisbane Roar on Saturday afternoon.

The Roar remain winless in the opening three rounds of the league despite dominating possession and creating plenty of chances in their first three games.

Brisbane almost opened the scoring in the ninth minute after American Shea Connors was slipped in behind Victory’s defence, but Victory defender Polly Doran made a last-ditch interception to keep the scores level.

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Roar winger Anna Margraf found herself in a similar one-on-one position six minutes later, but her shot fizzed straight at Victory goalkeeper Casey Dumont.

While Brisbane continue to struggle in the final third, Melbourne Victory remain lethal up front, with nine goals now scored in their past three games.

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USA striker Lynn Williams broke the deadlock against Brisbane in the 35th minute, heading home a pin-point cross from winger Harriet Withers after waves of Roar attacks.

Williams, who’s on a short-term loan deal with Victory until January, then returned the favour for Withers just after half-time, clipping in a cross that Withers tapped home to make it 2-0.

Brisbane pulled a goal back in the 64th minute through stand-out attacker Connors, who latched onto a direct long pass from defender Jessie Rasschaert and slipped the ball beneath Dumont to score her first-ever A-League Women’s Goal.

Connors almost had a brace in the 71st minute, racing through to convert a headed through-ball from Margraf, but she was called back for offside.

Williams would notch a second assist in the 85th minute, charging through Brisbane’s defenders before sending an easy square pass for compatriot Catherine Zimmerman to convert.

Brisbane made things interesting for the defending champions in stoppage time when striker Larissa Crummer volleyed home a Dumont spill, but it wasn’t enough as the Roar enter round four on the foot of the ladder.

City cruise to third

Elsewhere on Saturday, Melbourne City jumped into the top four after defeating Adelaide 3-1. 

New signing Rhianna Pollicina scored a Goal of the Season contender in the 38th minute, cutting inside and rocketing the ball into the top corner.

New Zealand international Hannah Wilkinson made it two for City two minutes later, heading home a Pollicina corner for her first goal for the club.

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Adelaide striker Chelsie Dawber would open her season account in the 65th minute, scrambling home a corner that City goalkeeper Melissa Barbieri parried into her path.

The Reds suffered from the absence of captain Isabel Hodgson through injury, while stand-out midfielder Emily Condon was forced off just after the hour.

They had a penalty shout in the final minutes of regular time after Fiona Worts appeared to be fouled by City captain Emma Checker, but it was waved away.

However, this was City’s night, having controlled the game from the opening whistle and nullifying Adelaide’s deadliest players.

Wilkinson iced the cake for City in stoppage time, converting a cross from Leticia McKenna to score her first brace for the club and taking City into the top four.

Brisbane will travel to Canberra in a bottom-of-the-table clash on Thursday, while City face Victory in the second Melbourne Derby on Boxing Day.

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