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Australian Football: Keeper saves the day for Sydney

Goalkeeper Thomas Heward-Belle was the hero for Sydney FC when saving a late penalty to earn his side all three points in a 2-1 win over Adelaide United.

Sydney are out to win the 2021/22 A-League grand final and picked up a massive three points at Coopers Stadium in Adelaide.

Keeper heroics

The Sky Blues were leading 2-1 with just two minutes of normal time left to play when Heward-Belle, who is in the side to replace Socceroo Andrew Redmayne, dived to his left to deny Hiroshi Ibusuki from the spot.

Adelaide poured forward after that as they desperately tried to find an equaliser and Sydney coach Steve Corica hailed the resilience of his side.

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"They're a very good team at home and difficult to beat," Corica said. "That's why we're pleased with the three points and the performance, it was good.

"It showed great character again, the resilience the boys showed to defend the goal in the last five, six, seven minutes because they were putting balls in everywhere and we were defending well."

Crucial changes

The game was on a knife edge at 1-1 midway through the second half when Corica made a host of changes to bring on Max Burgess, Bobo, Ryhan Grant and Adam Le Fondre.

And they turned out to be inspired changes as Burgess and Bobo combined to score the winning goal in the 73rd minute.

"I got them on nice and early as well to give them opportunities to do what they did and I thought they changed the game for us as well," Corica added.

"There's some good quality, obviously on the bench which helps, but that's the first time we've had a few of the boys back."

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