Adelaide United commence its FFA Cup title defence when it tackles Floreat Athena in Perth on Sunday afternoon.
It will be the first ever Round of 32 match to be played on the weekend with the Reds looking to start on the right foot as it aims to record a three-peat.
United has won the tournament a record three times, including the last two iterations in 2018 and 2019 following last year’s cancellation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Founded by Greek immigrants in 1951, the Perth-based club celebrated their 70th anniversary this year and enter the Round of 32 stage for the third time. The side has been a mainstay in the top flight for more than 60 years with its most fruitful years experienced in the late 1980s with the team collecting a substantial amount of silverware. Athena has won eight state association cups, in addition to four state league championships, most recently occurring in 2007 when it remarkably went undefeated.
Having led at the midway point of the campaign following an impressive start, their form waned in the second half of the year. Athena ended up finishing in second spot, four points behind Perth Soccer Club in the NPLM WA. The two teams would meet again in the grand final with Athena falling 6-3 in the decider last Saturday. However, back in July Athena prevailed in the state cup final, beating ECU Joondalup 1-0.
FFA Cup record
Floreat have been in the competition on two previous occasions in 2016 and 2019. In both of those instances they suffered first round exits. In 2016, they went down 2-1 to Melbourne City and three years later lost 4-3 away to Adelaide Olympic in a thriller.
Coach Vas Vujacic has several integral players at his disposal. Christopher Saldaris scored 10 goals in 23 league games, while Nicholas Ambrogio slotted nine in 25. Robert Harding, Sean McManus and Ben Steele also featured regularly for the Perth outfit.
Sunday, 26 September vs Floreat Athena
FFA Cup 2021 Round of 32
Kick-off 2.30pm ACST
Venue: E & D Litis Stadium
Stream: Live and Free via 10 play
Watch all of the FFA Cup matches in 2021 LIVE & FREE on 10 play!
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The FFA Cup won’t be broadcast on TV, so you'll need to access the LIVE events the following ways:
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The event schedules will be updated as details are confirmed. You can find the schedule here: FFA Cup 2021 Fixtures
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