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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Mar 15, 2013

Adelaide and Newcastle draw in A-League

Adelaide United secured a home A-League final with a 1-1 draw on Friday night against Newcastle Jets.

Newcastle's Michael Bridges and Adelaide import Marcelo Carrusca both scored in the Hindmarsh Stadium stalemate.

The draw ensured Adelaide can't finish lower than fourth and will host a final, most likely an elimination playoff.

But their goal-scorer Carrusca limped off with an apparent groin injury after scoring the equaliser in a free-flowing fixture.

The Reds (42 points) took third spot from Melbourne Victory (40 points), who travel to play Sydney FC on Saturday night. Newcastle (31 points) rose to fifth ahead of the sixth-placed Sky Blues (30 points).

The Jets scored in bizarre fashion in the 44nd minute with Bridges netting a goal he knew little about.

The scoring opportunity started when Adelaide defender Cameron Watson had a throw-in but inexplicably launched into his own penalty box.

But the throw-in was errant and lobbed between Reds defender Nigel Boogard and goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic, who sensed danger and instinctively grabbed the ball, resulting in a free kick.

With a wall of Adelaide players just a metre in front of Galekovic, Newcastle's Craig Goodwin blasted a free kick which struck Bridges' left foot and ricocheted into the net.

While fortunate, the goal was justice for the Jets who were denied scoring in the eighth minute due to an incorrect linesman's call.

Jets striker Adam Taggart found the net with a superbly judged strike which sailed over Galekovic's head, only for the Newcastle attacker to be penalised for offside - a ruling replays showed was wrong.

Newcastle took a 1-0 lead into halftime but conceded their advantage four minutes into the second half when Carrusca scored a gem.

The Argentine, who has already logged two goal-of-the-year contenders, turned Goodwin on a wing with a deft touch and then drifted toward goal in the 49th minute.

When within 20 metres, Carrusca launched a searing left-footer which beat Jets 'keeper Mark Birighitti, diving to his right.

Adelaide believed they pinched a winner in the 91st minute when Dario Vidosic netted from close range, only for a linesman to deny the goal.

The linesman ruled Jeronimo Nuemann was offside when the ball was crossed to Vidosic, but replays again showed an incorrect ruling.

"It was a clear goal," Vidosic told Fox Sports.

"Everyone makes mistakes but unfortunately that one cost us three points."

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