Nigro 8, Ibini 4: Wanderers vs Mariners Player Ratings
In yet another thrilling match of the 2020-21 A-League season, the Wanderers and Mariners have drawn in their Tuesday evening encounter at Bankwest Stadium.
Below are our player ratings out of 10 for both sides from the 2-2 result.
Western Sydney Wanderers
Daniel Margush - 5
The Wanderers goalkeeper had some issues with coming out of his area tonight. He might have made Matt Simon's mind up with the first goal by coming off his line when he didn't need to. Straight after that he almost gave away a cheap second when he flew out but shanked his clearance to Marco Urena. Did make an incredible save to deny Daniel Bouman in the first half though.
Ziggy Gordon - 6.5
Was his usual calm and assured self and rarely put a foot wrong.
Dylan McGowan - 7
McGowan was rarely beaten and on many occasions he held his ground and stood firm in the face of Mariners forward pressure.
Mark Natta - 8
Tonight was a real coming-of-age game for the 18-year-old, who seems to be growing in confidence each time he steps out onto the pitch. Held firm brilliantly to stop Kuol from netting late winner as well.
Thomas Aquilina - 8.5
The Mariners rarely exploited the 20-year-old's side throughout the ninety, and his excellent last-ditch block denied Jack Clisby from putting the Mariners two up in the second half. Also showed off his attacking prowess with a perfect square pass to tee up Bruce Kamau's first.
James Troisi - 5.5
Troisi seemed restricted in a positional sense by filling in for the suspended Graham Dorrans as a deeper midfielder. He did slowly grow into the game but there were times where he was a little sloppy and blasé on the ball.
Keanu Baccus - 4.5
Baccus has been impressive for the most part so far this season, but tonight he was uninspiring and careless in possession. Although it was controversial, the midfielder's challenge on Alou Kuol with ten minutes to go - that gave the Mariners the equaliser - was naive and highlighted that he still lacks experience.
Daniel Wilmering - 8
Was a passenger at the start of the game, but became increasingly more involved by delivering more enticing crosses in the box as the game wore on. He also made a crucial intervention to stop Josh Nisbet from going through on goal at the end.
Bernie Ibini - 4
Ibini was rarely involved and despite having the pace to stretch the Mariners he failed to recognise how to use this strength. Was rightly hooked in the second half.
Nicolai Muller - 4
Had a very similar performance to Ibini and I honestly can't remember him having a meaningful touch in the first half. Was slightly more involved in the second but was also correctly subbed on the hour.
Mitchell Duke - 8
The fan favourite was always at the heart of each promising attack for the home side. Despite a difficult first half, the forward adapted well by coming short and drifting out wide to get involved and affect the play more.
Bruce Kamau - 8
Despite looking like he lacked confidence at the start of his cameo, Kamau then turned the game on its head with a brilliant brace. He first got himself in the right place at the right time for the equaliser before a sensational run and long-range strike put the Wanderers in front.
Simon Cox - 7.5
Cox brought the constant movement that was sorely lacking by his fellow forwards up until his arrival in the second half. Played his part in the first goal by combining with Duke.
Central Coast Mariners
Mark Birighitti - 6
Made a smart reaction stop to hold a Duke strike form close-range in the second half. He might have done more to prevent the Wanderer's second, as Kamau's strike slowly deflected into the corner.
Stefan Nigro - 8
Got the pre-assist for the opening goal, as his pass opened up the space for Urena to eventually set up Simon. Also made a few crucial tackles and interceptions to prevent the final pass finding a Wanderers attacker and always looked comfortable on the ball.
Ruon Tongyik - 6
Tongyik's first half was superb, as he continued his phenomenal success rate in 1v1 situations by rarely being beaten. His second half was more shaky though and he was caught flat-footed by Kamau in the lead up to the Wanderer's second goal.
Kye Rowles - 7
The potential Olympian doesn't get drawn into difficult situations or drawn out of the defensive line. He doesn't panic and in a good way you rarely saw him throughout the game.
Jack Clisby - 6
Clisby could have showed more intent to go forward. Despite this, he did make great run into the area in the second half and should have scored after getting on the end of a Kuol pass.
Gianni Stensness - 5
Stensness was a little sloppy and rusty on the ball in the first half but did make a huge block to prevent Duke from equalising early in the second. Somehow missed a point-blank header towards the end.
Oliver Bozanic - 7
As per usual Bozanic kept the ball moving effectively and the Mariners ticking over. Stepped up by dispatching the late penalty but arguably should have been punished at the end for a clumsy foul on Kamau inside the box.
Daniel Bouman - 5
Bouman should have doubled the lead in the first half when he struck straight at Margush from point-blank range, underlining a general lack of composure at times. His work rate is exceptional though.
Daniel De Silva - 5
The ex-Perth man zoned in and out of the game and could have done more to stretch the Wanderers back five.
Marco Urena - 8
The Costa Rican's movement and pass to assist Matt Simon's opener was sensational. His constant variation of movement caused the Wanderers all sorts of problems and it was a surprise to see him subbed so early.
Matt Simon - 8
The veteran's finish over Margush to open the scoring was exquisite. His ability to drop deep and help out by winning fouls and relieving pressure in the defensive half is unrivalled by other centre forwards in the league. Like Urena it was surprising to see him taken off so early.
Alou Kuol - 8
If I was a Stuttgart fan I would be very pleased with what I saw from Kuol, even though it was just a cameo off the bench. The youngster constantly makes something out of nothing and he used this unique trait to win a contentious penalty late on.
Josh Nisbet - 6
As always the midfielder brought massive amounts of energy from the bench, but he could have won the game at the end with a better touch that would have taken him past Wilmering and through on goal.
Jaden Casella - N/A
Came on too late for a rating.
Michal Janota - N/A
Came on too late for a rating.