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George Clarke

Tilio magic helps City rescue ALM point against Sydney

Marco Tilio has slotted home Melbourne City's equaliser in a 1-1 away ALM draw with Sydney FC. (Steven Markham/AAP PHOTOS)

Aurelio Vidmar is encouraged by Marco Tilio's start to his second coming at Melbourne City after he scored a delightful goal to help snatch a point in a 1-1 draw away to Sydney FC.

Tilio's superb strike in front of a 15,120-strong crowd Allianz Stadium on Saturday was his first goal at senior level in nearly 10 months.

The 22-year-old winger always seemed destined for success but his career hit a roadblock when he left Melbourne last year for a big-money move to Scottish giants Celtic.

Troubled by injury, the seven-cap Australia international played a grand total of 27 minutes across two games in Glasgow and was loaned back to City in January in a bid to restart his career.

His 61th minute goal showed why Celtic were so keen to land him in the first place as the winger latched onto a clearance from City goalkeeper Jamie Young.

Tilio then rounded two Sky Blues defenders and buried the ball past goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne.

And coach Vidmar is hoping it is a sign of things to come as his City bid to claw their way back into the top six.

"He hasn't played for six months and he just needs match rhythm," he said.

"He's reasonably fit but match rhythm is completely different.

"He got 70-odd minutes last week and was able to finish off the game tonight ... but he'll get better.

"Sometimes when you haven't played for five or six months, you need six games to get into some really good rhythm and obviously there's not too many games left, so he'll have to find that pretty quickly."

While Tilio will no doubt take confidence from his goal, City are still struggling for spark and the draw means the reigning premiers have just one win in their last seven.

Apart from their sole goal of the evening, City lacked creativity and captain Jamie Maclaren is now on a barren run of eight games without a goal.

But it certainly helped their cause that Sydney were so wasteful with their opportunities, with coach Ufuk Talay accusing his side of lacking a killer instinct.

"Overall I thought we played well, performance wise but we were disappointed to drop the two points," Talay said.

"We're playing at home and we want to win all our games at home."

Left-back Jordan Courtney-Perkins eventually gave the Sky Blues the lead in the 29th minute before Tilio drew City level to claim a point.

The Melburnians remain outside the top six following Saturday's draw while Sydney are still in the finals spots.

The Sky Blues will head into next week's derby against the Wanderers without captain Luke Brattan after he picked up a fifth yellow card for the campaign.

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