Emina Ekic hat-trick helps Melbourne City top Brisbane Roar 5-3 in A-League Women

Emina Ekic scores for Melbourne City in Thursday’s win over Brisbane Roar at AAMI Park.

Emina Ekic scores for Melbourne City in Thursday’s win over Brisbane Roar at AAMI Park. Photo: AAP

A hat-trick from Emina Ekic has helped top-of-the-table Melbourne City outlast Brisbane Roar and secure a 5-3 A-League Women win at AAMI Park.

Now sitting on five goals in just seven games, Ekic struck a quickfire double in the 20th and 22nd minutes to put City ahead after Mia Corbin had Roar in front after just four minutes.

After delivering the corner that Hannah Wilkinson turned in for a goal in the 36th minute, the Bosnian international then grabbed a third in the 52nd minute, answering the challenge of Roar’s Jenna McCormick, who had made it 3-2 five minutes earlier.

Corbin again made it a one-goal game with her second in the 72nd, but City answered again, this time with a Rhianna Pollicina penalty three minutes later.

Thursday afternoon’s win stretched City’s lead atop the league to six points, with second-placed Perth Glory travelling to face Central Coast on Sunday afternoon.

Roar, meanwhile, remain outside the finals places, unable to capitalise on an early City error that saw them turn the ball over deep in their half and tee up Corbin.

“I think we were uncharacteristically sloppy,” said City coach Dario Vidosic.

However, City settled and forced a Roar turnover for Ekic’s first, before she fired in the rebound of a Daniela Galic shot moments later.

After Wilkinson and McCormick both headed home from corners, Galic played through Ekic to set up her third as she turned inside Tegan Thompson and drove in a shot.

“Once she’s inside that box, it’s very dangerous,” Vidosic said of Ekic.

Corbin took advantage of another sloppy City turnover in their territory to keep Roar in it, but a Thompson foul on Galic gave Pollicina the final say from the spot.

“Three goals should be enough to win a game,” said disappointed Roar coach Alex Smith.

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