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Beister completes Victory's A-League rout

NZN 12/11/2016 Ben McKay

Melbourne Victory have cashed in on Western Sydney's defensive howlers, claiming a 3-0 win over their A-League rivals.

Oliver Bozanic, Jai Ingham and new signing Max Beister were Victory's goalscorers, while Aritz Borda and Andrew Redmayne played the role of villains at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night in front of 21,480 fans.

A languid match transformed into an end-to-end affair after halftime, with Victory coming into their own.

Strong performances from Leigh Broxham, Fahid Ben Khalfallah and Bozanic will delight coach Kevin Muscat - as will the club's first clean sheet of the season.

Faced with charity offerings from the Wanderers' defence, a Victory win was always on the cards.

After an opening period devoid of major chances, Borda coughed up the opener on 26 minutes.

A poor pass from the Spaniard left countryman Dimas stretching and he toed the ball into the path of Ben Khalfallah.

Redmayne saved the Tunisian's effort but Borda again fluffed his lines when attempting to clear, taking an air swing which allowed Besart Berisha to thump the ball across goal for Bozanic to tap in.

The Socceroo midfielder raced away to the crowd, thumping the Victory badge on his shirt passionately to celebrate his first goal of the season.

Victory should have been awarded a second on halftime, when Ben Khalfallah's well-weighted ball was headed in by Mitch Austin at the back post.

Instead, referee Jarred Gillett struck out the goal when his linesman raised a flag to declare the winger - incorrectly - offside.

James Troisi hit the bar with a dinked effort on 52 minutes but the Wanderers, through dynamic pair Nicolas Martinez and Jumpei Kusukami, pushed on.

Jason Geria's tackle on Kusukami shortly after enraged the Wanderers' bench, with coach Tony Popovic adamant the challenge merited a penalty.

Either that was Gillett's square-up for Victory's disallowed goal, or Geria managed to get the slightest of touches to the ball.

Chances continued to come at both ends, but it was Victory who profited once more.

Goalkeeper Redmayne was nowhere near the ball when Troisi's cross arrived and was met by Ingham for Victory's second.

Substitute Kerem Bulut's injection boosted the Wanderers but it was another late change that completed the rout.

On 85 minutes, Beister backtracked on a run into the box to sidefoot home Ingham's cross from the left flank.

Strangely enough, after the match the losing coach was happier with his team's performance than the one on the right end of the 3-0 scoreline.

Muscat bemoaned "structural issues" behind his side's flat start.

"(It's a) funny game isn't it because our performance last week was far better than it was tonight but we lose 2-1 in Sydney and win 3-0 tonight," he said.

"I'm going to go mad trying to work this game out."

Popovic said he was "delighted" by the overall performance but angered by their first goal and the Geria challenge.

"We gave them a gift for the first goal ... and they punished us," he said.

"We had a clear penalty. There will not be a clearer one in the A-League."

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