Until they start to dominate their opponents, especially at home, Macarthur FC will always be vulnerable to teams with attacking prowess.
And that’s exactly what happened at Campbelltown Stadium yesterday afternoon when the Bulls picked up one premiership point after their 1-1 draw with Brisbane Roar.
It was without doubt a fair result from a high quality game of football in which both sides had their chances to score more goals.
Bulls coach Mile Sterjovski, asked about the officiating at the media conference showed some annoyance that one or two crucial decisions went against his team.
“I have to say I am disappointed we didn’t get the three points,’’ he said.
He may be right about the officials, but it’s also true that had his team buried some of their goal scoring chances, including a sitter from captain Ulises Davila, the Bulls would have been celebrating a big win from the opening round of the new A-League season.
The Bulls also have to do something about keeping the pressure on the opposition for long periods.
Against the Roar, and for many games last season, the Bulls would launch an unsuccessful raid, then allow their opponents to grab momentum.
Yesterday afternoon it looked like the Bulls would do well to survive against the Queenslanders.
The visitors were as keen as mustard, confidently going forward at every opportunity off the back of a smooth transition from the back to the midfield and then towards goal.
As for the Bulls, it has to be said that they also looked dangerous whenever they went on the counter attack.
Trundling off at half time with the score at 0-0, the two sides would have been disappointed that they had not bothered the scoreboard attendants.
However, both defences were rock solid, especially the Bulls, a marked improvement from last season.
Goalie Filip Kurto, who was wearing a very bright orange outfit, was close to the Bulls’ best, making several excellent saves during the match.
In attack, the standout man for the Bulls was young Jed Drew, who tormented the Roar defence all day with his sheer speed and agility.
After a bit of a clunky start when he was dispossessed two or three times, Drew just got better and better as the match went on.
Ten minutes from half time he beat several defenders to put on a perfect pass for Davila, who merely had to tap it in, but his shot from very close to the goal went just wide.
Drew had a shot himself from close range about six minutes from half time, but it also went wide.
With Brisbane also missing chances, fans were left wondering who was going to win this match at Campbelltown Stadium.
They were still asking that after their team, the Bulls, went ahead 1-0 thanks to a lovely header from new signing Raphael Borges Rodrigues 51 minutes into the game.
Ten minutes later the home side had another chance to go up 2-0, but it was not to be.
At the other end, Kurto was making more great saves as Brisbane piled on the pressure in a bid to get the equaliser.
It came in the 72nd minute from a controversial freekick just outside the box, and all of a sudden, at 1-1, the home side were faced with the possibility of losing their first game of the season – at home.
But they could also have won it, creating plenty of chances.
In the end however, it was not to be, and even the fans, who turned up in good numbers, shrugged their shoulders when the referee blew time.
Macarthur FC will take on the Mariners on the Central Coast in round two next Sunday, returning to Campbelltown the following Saturday to host Western United in round three.