Sydney FC coach Steve Corica was left to rue the officiating as the Newcastle Jets came from behind to seal a 2-2 draw at Kogarah Oval on Saturday.
The Sky Blues stormed into an early lead through an Adam Le Fondre penalty and Elvis Kamsoba’s strike in the 30th minute.
Valentino Yuel hit Corica’s men with two goals in the space of eight minutes after half-time, with the Sydney coach suggesting a free-kick in the build-up for the second was not taken from the correct spot.
He was also critical of a VAR decision to chalk off a Le Fondre goal in the 77th minute for offside which would have put the Sky Blues 3-2 up.
“It’s just a bit frustrating on my part,” Corica said.
“The third (Sydney) goal looked like a goal to me because it came off one of their players, so he (Le Fondre) can’t be offside.
“And he wasn’t offside anyway. It’s disappointing because I think the referee (Jonathan Barreiro) got a few decisions wrong.
“Their second goal was from 10 metres in front of where it should have been and it was rolling. Then he pulls up one of ours for the ball moving.
“You’ve got to be consistent for both teams.”
Asked if he would lodge a complaint with A-League officials, Corica said: “I don’t think you can do too much can you? I think they need to have a look at the referee, but that’s the way it goes.”
The result leaves both sides winless but Arthur Papas will be the happier of the two coaches after snatching a point against Sydney and Western Sydney away from home in successive weeks.
The home side sought to play behind the high line employed by Papas and they got their reward when Paulo Retre played Le Fondre in on goal in the seventh minute.
Barreiro pointed to the spot after Jack Duncan brought Le Fondre to ground and the Englishman made no mistake as he fired past the Jets keeper.
Kamsoba then turned home a Le Fondre cross to put Sydney 2-0 up with half an hour gone and the Sky Blues looked to be cruising.
But after the half-time break an inspired showing from Yuel got the Jets level.
The first goal saw the forward cut in from the flank and finish past Sydney goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne before he fired into the roof of the net to send the small section of travelling Jets fans into a state of delirium.
The Newcastle defence withstood a late onslaught from the Sky Blues which included Le Fondre’s disallowed goal but Papas felt his side were good value for the draw.
“We got punished on the counter attack but I think our response was fantastic,” he said.
“We had the belief to keep playing and we didn’t want to preserve and we had that belief to get back in the game. It could have gone either way.”