AFTER such a bright start under the Epsom-Huntly Reserve lights, FC Bendigo fell to a two-goal defeat in Saturday night’s National Premier League division one clash with St Albans.
Playing on Epsom’s main pitch for the first time, FC Bendigo hit the lead in the 18th minute from a Matt Breeze header.
The hosts controlled a lot of play throughout the first 45 minutes.
FC Bendigo’s precise passing and workrate at contests kept St Albans goalless in the first half.
The contest swung dramatically after the break.
St Albans drew level when Brodie Patterson struck from the penalty spot in the 59th minute.
About 11 minutes later and FC Bendigo was behind when Sean McIlroy latched on to a low cross from Ross Harvey and put the ball into the net.
A headed goal by Felix Rosman in the 74th minute put St Albans well in control.
FC Bendigo kept on working hard, but could not beat the defence as St Albans went on to record a 3-1 victory.
Playing coach of FC Bendigo, Steve Martin said the match was contrasting halves.
“The first half was well disciplined,” Martin said.
“For the first 35 minutes our structures and discipline were fantastic. In the second half, discipline to keep the ball was poor, creating turnovers because St Albans Saints had higher pressure,” Martin said.
“The momentum changed and quickly in the second half. St Albans just kept on attacking, and often picked off passes to our forward line.”
The action at Epsom-Huntly kicked off with FC Bendigo’s under-20 team scoring a 2-0 victory and achieving back-to-back wins for the first time.
FC Bendigo will play Richmond next Sunday at Kevin Bartlett Reserve.