Derby disappointment for Melbourne Knights

Melbourne Knights went down 2-1 to South Melbourne in the traditional derby at Lakeside Stadium on Sunday evening.

The Knights went into the half-time break trailing by a goal after Milos Lujic, the NPL’s leading scorer, put South ahead in the 43rd minute.

Down to 10 men after the dismissal of Damien Miskulin for a second yellow card, the Knights found a way to get back.

Four minutes after Miskulin’s yellow turned into a red, James McGarry scored after drawing his own free kick just outside the penalty box.

With a man down, it was tough going for the Knights to hold on to their point.

Matthew Millar rammed home that fact with a headed winner for South five minutes from time.

The Knights’ league finals chances are shot, but they still have plenty to play for this season.

The Andrew Marth-coached side has been counting down the sleeps until tomorrow night’s huge nationwide FFA Cup encounter with WA side Cockburn City at Knights Stadium, from 7.30pm.

In this weekend’s top-flight NPL action, Melbourne Knights will make the short trip to Avondale, while the finals-bound Green Gully, which played Monday night after deadline, will back up five days later to face Melbourne Victory at Green Gully Reserve.

In NPL2, St Albans moved to the top of the ladder after a 2-1 win over Goulburn Valley Suns at Churchill Reserve.

The Saints are a narrow one point clear of North Geelong Warriors and Whittlesea Ranges with four games to go. They travel to east conference powerhouse Kingston City on Saturday.

Sunshine George Cross took the challenge up to Kingston at Chaplin Reserve on Saturday, but lost 3-2.

In state league 1, Cairnlea may have blown any chance of escaping the relegation zone, going down 3-1 to bottom-of-the-ladder Diamond Valley United at Partingtons Flat.

North Sunshine Eagles crushed Banyule City 3-1 at Larissa Reserve, while Keilor Park and Western Suburbs played out a 1-1 draw at Keilor Park Recreation Reserve.

Sydenham Park showed tremendous fight, losing 3-2 to runaway ladder-leader Altona Magic at Paisley Park.