Isuzu UTE A-League Round 21 Recap: Wanderers’ Win, Nix Star Shines

Key moments in Isuzu UTE A-League Round 21: Wanderers’ regroup, Phoenix star shines, Bulls’ young gun, and Socceroos inclusion debated

The Isuzu UTE A-League saw some intense action in Round 21, with Western Sydney Wanderers breaking a drought by defeating Perth Glory thanks to goals from Brandon Borrello and Lachlan Brook. Head coach Marko Rudan detailed how the team regrouped after a heavy loss against Melbourne City, emphasizing the importance of a relaxed environment for the players.

In another match, Kosta Barbarouses shone for Wellington Phoenix, scoring the winning goal against Sydney FC and moving up the ranks as the fifth-highest goalscorer in A-League history. Coach Giancarlo Italiano praised Barbarouses for proving his doubters wrong and expressed his desire to keep him at the club for the next season.

At Macarthur FC, young talent Raphael Borges Rodrigues impressed with a goal to secure a victory over Brisbane Roar. Coach Mile Sterjovski commended the 20-year-old for his performance and bright future in the sport.

Newcastle Jets coach Rob Stanton addressed transfer speculation surrounding some players, including Clayton Taylor, hinting at the possibility of selling them to generate income for the club. Adelaide United coach Carl Veart spoke highly of Nestory Irankunda, a promising young player who contributed to the team’s win after a seven-match winless streak.

As the Socceroos prepare for the 2026 FIFA Men’s World Cup qualifiers, Melbourne Victory’s Bruno Fornaroli continues to prove his worth as the league’s top scorer. Despite some questioning his inclusion in the squad, Victory head coach Tony Popovic defended Fornaroli’s deserved spot based on his consistent form.

Lastly, Western United salvaged a point against Victory with a late equalizer from Ben Garuccio, extending their unbeaten run. Despite the positive result, coach John Aloisi highlighted the team’s frustration at letting the lead slip and emphasized their belief in their abilities to compete with any opponent.

Denis Hardin

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