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Melbourne City beats Wellington Phoenix 5-1 to remain in A-League hunt for second spot

ABC News logo ABC News 18/02/2017

Tom Doyle of the Wellington Phoenix and Nick Fitzgerald of Melbourne City during the round 20 A-League match between the Wellington and Melbourne City © Mark Tantrum/Getty Images Tom Doyle of the Wellington Phoenix and Nick Fitzgerald of Melbourne City during the round 20 A-League match between the Wellington and Melbourne City Melbourne City has earned three valuable points after beating the Phoenix 5-1 in Wellington.

The Victory enjoyed a dominant opening period, but got hit by a sucker punch goal before collapsing, allowing cash-rich City to dominate thereafter.

City opened the scoring against the run of play through an Ryan Lowry own goal, as Nick Fitzgerald raced to the byline before his cutback ricocheted into the back of the net off Lowry's ankle.

Melbourne City forward Bruno Fornaroli then got his 13th goal of the season as he volleyed home from a set piece routine to double the lead inside half an hour.

Melbourne City celebrates its second goal against the Phoenix © AAP/Ross Setford Melbourne City celebrates its second goal against the Phoenix Anthony Caceres then made it 3-0 in the second stanza as he made the finishing touch on an excellent break up the wing from Josh Rose.

The hosts pulled a goal back in mesmerising style, with Kostas Barbarouses collecting the ball on the left wing, before cutting past two backpeddling defenders to slot home what proved to be a consolation effort.

Neil Kilkenny rubbed salt in the Phoenix's wounds with a fortuitous run into the hosts' box before slotting past to restore the three-goal cushion.

Nicolas Colazo also got himself on the scoresheet in the dying stages, capping off a sweeping move before side-footing home between the keeper's legs.

The win sees City well in the mix in the battle for second spot after moving to 30 points, though they are well behind the high-flying, unbeaten leaders in Sydney FC on 47.

The Phoenix remain in eighth spot on 19 points.

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