Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Sydney FC 1-0 Melbourne City (aet): Grant secures record fifth A-League title

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 30 Aug 2020

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Sydney FC became A-League champions for a record fifth time on Sunday with a 1-0 victory over Melbourne City after extra time in the Grand Final.

Rhyan Grant’s improvised finish in the 100th minute of the match at Bankwest Stadium secured back-to-back championships for the Sky Blues and ensured City’s first Grand Final ended in disappointment.

Steve Corica’s side are the first to win five titles in the competition’s history and the first since Brisbane Roar eight years ago to claim back-to-back triumphs.

City thought they had the lead 17 minutes in when Harrison Delbridge drilled in a shot from the edge of the area, but the goal was disallowed after a VAR check penalised Lachlan Wales for standing in front of goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne while offside.

City had the better of the first half-hour and Craig Noone beat Redmayne with a scuffed effort near the left-hand post only for the covering Ryan McGowan to hook the ball clear.

At the other end, Adam Le Fondre felt he should have had a penalty after going to ground under contact from Curtis Good, but referee Chris Beath was unmoved.

Milos Ninkovic had a quiet first half but played a key part in a fine move that saw Le Fondre come close in the second, and he should have broken the deadlock moments later only for Joshua Brillante to stand tall and block his close-range effort.

Redmayne denied Noone from inside the box and scrambled to gather a Scott Galloway strike, before Tom Glover made a crucial block with his leg to deny Sydney a fortuitous winner at the end of normal time.

Luke Brattan provided the telling moment of quality, his fine pass picking out Grant’s run into the box, and the full-back used his chest to divert the ball beyond Glover and into the bottom-right corner.

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