Jets edge past Victory

Melbourne Victory have fallen to the Newcastle Jets 2-1 at Hunter Stadium as the visitors' failure to convert in the first period was punished by back-to-back second-half goals from Emile Heskey.

Melbourne Victory have fallen to the Newcastle Jets 2-1 at Hunter Stadium as the visitors' failure to convert in the first period was punished by back-to-back second-half goals from Emile Heskey.

Marco Rojas almost scored the opener for Victory in the first minute of the match when he gathered a through ball on the right-hand side of the box but sent his shot across goals past the lurking Archie Thompson and out for a goal kick.

Adrian Leijer was dealt a yellow card in the 24th minute of the match, the defender was trying to protect a Newcastle ball through to Nathan Coe in goals but collided with Ben Kantarovski and the Jets were given a free kick at the top of the box.

Ruben Zadkovich missed Newcastle's best chance of the first half, sending the free kick to the left of Victory's Coe in goals.

With 17 minutes remaining in the half, left back Adam Traore unleashed a super strike at the top left corner from outside the box but an athletic save from Newcastle's Mark Birighitti forced the ball out for a corner.

Victory had another chance in the 35th when Marcos Flores passed to Thompson on the right wing, who delivered a powerful pin-point cross back to the Argentinean but he was unable to steer his strike into the net.

Flores had a free kick on the far wing in the 43rd minute and his cross set up Billy Celeski for a shot outside the box but the midfielder was unable to convert his half-volley strike.

Mark Milligan played a central defensive role effectively giving Victory five at the back and the side held a clean sheet in the first half.

Victory's strong defensive effort on Heskey in the first half was almost marred when the striker received a touch across goal at the top of the box and sent a powerful strike over the bar in the final minute of the half.

But Heskey would convert eight minutes into the second half when an overlapping run was crossed into the striker who tapped the ball into the back of the net for game's opener.

The English recruit's second came just three minutes when a corner kick was headed in the box which Heskey hooked over his shoulder, increasing Victory's deficit to two goals.

Thompson almost pulled one back for the visitors when he passed a defender in the box but his strike was easily dealt with by Birighitti in the 62nd.

Melbourne's luck finally changed when Thompson scored after hearing a clearing kick from Newcastle's defence into the back of the net with 19 minutes remaining.

The Melbourne Victory striker almost equalled Heskey's effort in the 78th minute but ran out of space in the box and had his strike deflected out of the danger area.

Victory controlled the play throughout the match with 55 percent possession and seven shots on target to Newcastle's four but will rue their failure to finish in the first half.

Victory now looks to their next match on November 5 against the Wellington Phoenix at Etihad stadium.