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Gold Coast United knock five past fellow newcomer Nth Qld Fury

The A-League's two newest clubs, Gold Coast United and North Queensland Fury, met in Round 2 tonight and it was all one-way traffic. Gold Coast dominated proceedings to blast away the Fury 5-0 at Skilled Park with four goals being supplied by star striker Shane Smeltz.

Gold Coast United: 5 North Queensland Fury: 0

Scorers:GCU - Shane Smeltz 30', 55'(P), 63', 64', Tahj Minniecon 80' NQF - nil Venue: Skilled Park Crowd: 7,526

On the half-hour mark, Gold Coast's Ivory Coast signing, Adama Traore, found his captain Jason Culina in midfield who played a lovely ball on the outside of his foot to striker Shane Smeltz.

The New Zealand international controlled it well, took it inside the box and finished calmly, giving Fury keeper Paul Henderson no chance.

Moments prior to half-time, United peppered the goals with Smeltz having an open header saved by Henderson before Kristian Rees saw his header from the ensuing corner fly over the crossbar.

However, Fury were able to hold steady and go into the break just one down after a half of domination from the home side.

In the 53rd minute, United defender Michael Thwaite made a barnstorming run into the area and was brought down by Fury defender Beau Busch.

Smeltz stepped up to the spot and hit his penalty hard to Henderson's left but all the former Leicester City man could do was knock into the back of the net to give United a 2-0 lead.

Eight minutes later, Culina found Joel Porter in central midfield who whipped a left-footed ball in the path of Smeltz who controlled, then cut back and his shot was helped in by Busch to further United's advantage and bring up his hat-trick.

It only got worse for the Fury a minute later when Steve Fitzsimmons played a ball in from the right flank that ended up at the feet of Smeltz who was able to dance around his man and put away his fourth goal.

Gold Coast managed to score a fifth in the 80th minute when Fury midfielder Robbie Middleby gave the ball away to Smeltz in the centre of the pitch who knocked it to Culina.

The Australian international then played a brilliant one-touch through ball to substitute Tahj Minniecon who weaved his way around the defence and threaded it past a helpless Henderson to ultimately wrap up proceedings.

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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