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Football: Ono penalty as Wanderers go five clear in A-League

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Japanese superstar Shinji Ono converted a penalty as newcomers Western Sydney Wanderers went five points clear at the top of Australia's A-League on Sunday.

The Wanderers, in their debut season, won a record-breaking ninth straight game with a 2-1 win over New Zealand's Wellington Phoenix at home to capitalise on former leaders Central Coast's 2-0 loss at Sydney FC.

Ono and striker Mark Bridge both scored from the penalty spot for the Wanderers, with Jeremy Brockie getting one back for the Phoenix.

The Wanderers were stretched by the bottom-placed Kiwis who will miss out on this year's playoffs following Sunday's defeat.

Ono slotted home the penalty in the eighth minute for his seventh goal of the season.

The Mariners virtually conceded finishing top of the regular season table with a 2-0 loss to Alessandro Del Piero's Sydney FC on Saturday.

Defender Sebastian Ryall put the hosts in front in the opening half and Joel Chianese doubled the advantage after the break to lift Sydney into fifth spot with their sixth win in a row at home.

The Mariners, suffering back-to-back losses for the first time this season, head to Japan for this week's AFC Champions League match against Kashiwa Reysol, in second spot in the A-League.

Brisbane Roar continued to thwart Melbourne Victory and their former coach Ange Postecoglou with a 1-1 draw in Brisbane on Saturday.

While the defending champions were far more welcoming of their old mentor than back in round two, Postecoglou endured a frustrating second return to Brisbane as the Victory failed to end a seven-match winless run against the Roar.

Victory midfielder Leigh Broxham scored the first headed goal of his career before Ivan Franjic equalised for the Roar in the second half.

Newcastle's finals hopes look forlorn after a stoppage-time winner from Michael Thwaite gave lowly Perth a 2-1 win in Newcastle on Friday.

Melbourne Heart host Adelaide United in the remaining game of the round on Monday.

rsm/ac

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130310/football-ono-penalty-wanderers-go-five-clear-league