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2018/19 Australian A League, Regular Season
  • Adam Le Fondre (4')
  • Alex Brosque (53')

Wanderers coach Markus Babbel sent off as Sydney FC seal derby win

Anger over the A-League's controversial video review system is set to reach fever pitch after Western Sydney coach Markus Babbel's send-off in a 2-0 derby loss to Sydney FC.

The Sky Blues continued their dominance over the Wanderers on Saturday, courtesy of Adam Le Fondre and Alex Brosque goals either side of halftime at the SCG.

But yet another incident from the video assistant review system (VAR) will steal headlines after Babbel was marched midway through the second half.

Western Sydney winger Roly Bonevacia appeared to have set up a grandstand finish when his low shot beat Andrew Redmayne at his near post.

However on review, it appeared the referee ruled a retreating Jaushua Sotirio impeded Michael Zullo from defending the Joshua Risdon cross in the lead-up.

Replays showed a falling Zullo appearing to take full advantage of Risdon running back from an offside position.

Babbel was immediately incensed, flinging his jacket off in disgust and remonstrating with fourth official Benjamin Abraham.

The rookie coach kicked the advertising hoarding when shown red by Beath, and gave a standing Red and Black Bloc a thumbs up on his way out.

It wasn't until after the game that referee Chris Beath revealed he had ruled that Sotirio had come from an offside position.

"The attacker is clearly in an offside position. His actual impact was on the defender, on Zullo's ability to play the ball," Beath said after the game.

"It was only picked up by the VAR. From a technical point of view, the offside is the correct decision."

The VAR incident came hours after Melbourne City were angered by a missed penalty shout for Bruno Fornaroli earlier on Saturday against Central Coast.

It also came after more VAR drama in Friday night's Adelaide-Newcastle game, and days of criticism which followed last week's Melbourne derby.

The SCG saga overshadows another derby win for the Sky Blues, who have now lost only one of their past 15 matches against their fierce rivals.

The first soccer match at the SCG in more than 30 years drew a crowd of 30,588.

It didn't take long for the home side to assert their dominance, with Le Fondre netting his second goal in as many games in the early season.

The former Premier League striker was initially turned away from close range by Vedran Janjetovic, but made no mistake with the rebound effort.

And while the Sky Blues' possession hovered around 60 percent for most of the half, the Wanderers weren't without their chances.

Bonevacia blazed over from close range and Alex Baumjohann audaciously attempted a backheel, but neither reduced the 1-0 halftime deficit.

Brosque's early second-half goal -- taking advantage of a Risdon turnover in his own box -- put the Wanderers further on the back foot.

Babbel apologised for his antics after the game, but refused to accept the explanation that Sotirio was offside.

"Where [do you want him] to go? He is not air, he has to stay. The defender can run around him. It was very hard for us, [but] we have to accept this," he said.