2020-21 Australian A League, Regular Season
  • Elvis Kamsoba (23')
  • Markel Susaeta (31')
  • James Meredith (69')

Meredith hits winner as Macarthur edge past Victory in A-League

Macarthur FC came from a goal down to beat a gritty Melbourne Victory 2-1 and leap into third place in the A-League.

Elvis Kamsoba handed Victory the lead in the 23rd minute, with Markel Susaeta equalising in the 31st, before James Meredith's 69th-minute header sealed all three points and snapped Macarthur's five-game winless run.

Victory took the lead against the run of play when Jacob Butterfield played a cross-field ball from inside his own half to Rudy Gestede, who flicked on a header to the feet of Kamsoba. The winger charged forward and cracked a powerful strike past an outstretched Adam Federici and into the opposite top corner.

- Stream ESPN FC Daily on ESPN+ (U.S. only)

Victory's lead at AAMI Park lasted just eight minutes. Benat pinched the ball off Jake Brimmer and slipped a pass through to Susaeta, whose shot deflected off Nick Ansell and nestled in the Victory goal.

Kruse could have restored parity in the 39th minute when he latched onto Leigh Broxham's long ball but couldn't beat Federici, kicking off a run of spurned Victory chances.

Barely a minute later, Gestede headed another chance over the bar before scuffing another high in the 41st minute. In the 42nd minute, Kruse delivered a delightful through ball for Kamsoba but the winger hit a tame shot straight at Federici.

Just before half-time, Jake Brimmer smacked a free kick off the crossbar with referee Chris Beath waving away Victory's appeals for a Lachlan Rose handball in the aftermath.

Macarthur skipper and former Victory captain Mark Milligan drew attention when he was caught on camera just before a half-time interview, appearing to yell down the tunnel at Gestede that he was "the worst striker to play for Melbourne Victory".

"To each their own opinion," Kean said. "For us, since [Gestede's] been here when we've managed to get him on the pitch he's been effective."

Macarthur looked to have taken the lead in the 54th minute when Jake McGing struck at a corner but it was overturned by VAR after replays showed Meredith handballed in the lead-up.

Fifteen minutes later, Meredith found space at the back post and met Benat's cross with a header that bounced home.

Brimmer sent an 80th-minute shot swerving over the crossbar, while Federici denied Gestede with a close-range reflex save two minutes later and Macarthur held on.

"Particularly first half we struggled with certain parts of the game," Bulls coach Ante Milicic said.

"But to go a goal down and then to come back from that and to get three points against a difficult opponent is pleasing."

Victory face a tight turnaround to Sunday's game against the Glory in Perth. Brandon Lauton (groin) limped off in the 66th minute but Ben Folami (groin) and Storm Roux (suspension) should return.