City travelled to Adelaide high on confidence after overcoming Brisbane Roar in their opening fixture while the hosts shared the points against Perth at a packed out HBF Park.
It was the men from Coopers who began with a bang as they forced their way into City’s half in the opening minute.
However, it was not long before City produced a chance of their own via none other than Jamie Maclaren whose turn and swivel resulted in a strike that forced Adelaide shot stopper James Delianov into action.
A pause in play after a head collision between the Reds’ Javi Lopez and City’s Maclaren seemed to have done the trick for the visitors who began to dominate after the restart. They had cause to celebrate just before the half hour mark when Maclaren broke his three-game goal drought by tapping home Andrew Nabbout’s cross from the right wing.
Patrick Kisnorbo’s side were now developing their rhythm as they proceeded to produce another guilt-edged opportunity through Florin Berenguer whose cross sweeped across Adelaide’s goal before being snuffed out by Lopez who had an eagerly awaiting Nabbout in his rear.
The second half began in similar fashion with Melbourne dominating for large periods with Nabbout causing all sorts of problems down the right wing.
He soon joined Maclaren on the scoresheet with a pearler of a strike with the outside of his right foot that nestled into the top right corner.
It all seemed as like City may have been cruising to a comfortable three points but it was Reds’ captain Stefan Mauk who had a different idea when he followed in Kusini Yengi’s strike in the 78th minute.
Yengi was hoping to have made it two goals from two but his effort struck the post before hitting the backside of Tom Glover as Mauk waited in the wings, ready to unleash from six yards out.
Momentum had now swung in Adelaide’s favour and they came close to restoring parity via Mohamad Toure who had his chance blocked by Glover. Just when it seemed like City had escaped with all three points – Adelaide pounced.
Substitute Jordan Bos was dispossessed by Ben Halloran who noticed Glover was off his line before unleashing a delectable strike that found its way into the unguarded net with only seconds left in regulation time.
Six minutes of injury time ensued with Reds’ fans now pushing their side for an unlikely winner. They almost thought they had achieved the unthinkable when Jacob Tratt rose highest however his header was comfortable collected by the Melbourne custodian.
A share of the points will be considered a great shift by Adelaide but a matter of lost points for Melbourne who appeared to be in control for most of the encounter.