Back home, Southern United put on a strong display
By Holly Percival
Garbhan Coughlan scores two, as Southern are back to winning ways
Southern found themselves playing their first home game of the season, following the cancelled match against Auckland City last month. In a South Island derby in a sodden Dunedin, Southern took the lead early on through Garbhan Coughlan off a lovely through ball by Abdulla Al-Kalisy. However, the prospects of winning were significantly reduced when Markus Fjørtoft received a quick-fire pair of bookings mid-way through the half and was dismissed. Tasman made use of their numerical advantage to draw level through a Kiernan Hughes-Mason curler but Southern were given a lifeline just before the break from the penalty spot which Coughlan gratefully accepted.
In difficult conditions, Southern did well to remain an attacking threat with only ten men and managed to extend their lead just before the hour when a Danny Ledwith corner found its way to Stephen Last and he put it away. Despite being a man up, Tasman did not provide any proper threat for the remainder of the game, with a solid Liam Little at the back for Southern dealing with threats mainly created through set-pieces. It was a professional and mature performance by Southern United, as the team continued in the same vein, exuding strong defensive authority, accompanied by strong attacking performances.