Macarthur FC draws first trial against A-League opponents

Macarthur FC's first trial match against A-League an opponent ended in an entertaining 3-all draw at Maitland Sportsground last Thursday.

The Bulls took on the more experienced Newcastle Jets team in the nail-biting pre-season trial game.

Valentino Yuel looked dangerous with the ball for Newcastle, asked the visitors plenty of questions and scored the Jets' opening goal late in the first half.

Matt Derbyshire then landed a double for Macarthur either side of half-time, the first from a header and the second finishing a sharp counter attack, to give them a 2-1 advantage by the hour mark.

Newcastle captain Nigel Boogaard replied just after three-quarter time, putting a header on Ramy Najjarine's pinpoint cross.

Less than three minutes later Moudi Najjar put the Bulls in front for a second time after Jets goalkeeper Jack Duncan, who made back-to-back saves in the first half, was drawn out by a through ball.

Newcastle youngster Lucas Mauragis, who came off the bench, then levelled proceedings in the 82nd minute. Maki Petratos made the back-post delivery.

Jets caretaker coach Craig Deans left his side unchanged for most of the match, only introducing substitutes in the closing 20 minutes, and said there were "encouraging signs".

"We obviously wanted to win the game and on balance we probably created more chances to score, but we probably weren't as clinical as we need to be," Deans said.

"It was our second proper game and we've got another four games to go in the pre-season. Plenty to work on but plenty of encouraging signs."