Sydney's latest record-breaking feat in big win
THE Sky Blue steamroller powers on, breaking records at every turn.
A 2-0 defeat of Melbourne City at Allianz Stadium gave Sydney FC a 19th win of the season, setting a new high for victories in a season thanks to goals from Alex Brosque and a Bobo brace that opened up a 17-point gap at the top of the league.
Even amidst a display that for long periods was one of their least convincing of recent weeks, Sydney found three moments of quality to swat City aside, and the visitors are in danger of losing a place in the top four.
Four points from their final two regular-season games will also create an all-time points record, as Graham Arnold's side show no sign of losing their appetite for demolishing every opponent.
But they had to wait to establish an advantage for in a game where two prolific attacks had been expected to dominate, the resoluteness of the defences was for a long time more the theme.
In fact City almost grabbed an early lead in what would have been a hugely contentious manner, when Fornaroli was fouled on the edge of the Sydney box. There was no doubt about the foul, but the ball had run loose and Nicolas Calazo been allowed to shoot, when referee Peter Green called back play. In retrospect, Green would have been as relieved as anyone when Fornaroli's freekick struck the post and went wide.
The Uruguyan had another golden opportunity when Rhyan Grant miscontrolled a cross, leaving the City captain alone in the box - only a brilliantly desperate tackle from Aaron Calver saved Grant's complete embarrassment.
From Sydney there was little attacking threat in the first half, Milos Ninkovic engineering space on the edge of the box and shooting narrowly over in their clearest opportunity of the first 45 minutes. You sensed that couldn't last from a free-scoring attack and Ninkovic almost found the way through. His cute dribble on the edge of the box freed Alex Brosque and though Dean Bouzanis deflected Brosque's shot, Grant followed up with a shot that Ivan Franjic did athletically well to clear off the line.
Finally, though, the quality had to tell, though in the case of the first goal the creation was about as unsubtle as could be imagined. Zullo's long throw from level with the edge of the box was hardly surprising, yet somehow the City defence allowed the ball to bounce right through to the goalmouth where Alex Brosque hooked the ball past Bouzanis.
On 63 minutes it was two, and this time the goal was splendid in creation and execution. A one-touch passing move of the sort synonymous with the Sky Blues this season worked the ball to Brandon O'Neill in central midfield, and his pass sent Zullo galloping down the left.
The fullback measured up a low, driven cross and though it flicked off Franjic, Bobo lunged in at the far post to score the second.
Now their gander was up, and with 12 minutes left they moved the ball effortlessly from one end to the other, with Bouzanis flinging himself to deflect away Zullo's low cross and deny the home side a third. But in injury time, the substitute David Carney floated a lovely cross to the far post, where Bobo powered home a header.