Reds fall short in absorbing Cup Final

Adelaide United have endured a heart-breaking 2-1 extra-time loss to Sydney FC in the Westfield FFA Cup 2017 Cup Final at Allianz Stadium on Tuesday night.

Miloš Ninković opened the scoring with a cool finish, but Nikola Mileusnic equalised when he picked out the top corner with a super strike to force another 30 minutes for the first time in a Cup Final.

But in the second period of extra-time Bobo headed home Adrian Mierzejewski’s contentious free-kick to claim the win.

Marco Kurz named an unchanged line-up for the Final which defeated the Central Coast Mariners 2-1 on Thursday night. Ersan Gülüm partnered Jordan Elsey in the heart of defence, while Daniel Adlung featured in midfield with Isaías. Ryan Kitto started for the third consecutive match on the wing and Baba Diawara began proceedings from the outset for the inaugural time in the Cup.

Adelaide appeared to have settled the better of the two sides but it was the Sky Blues who broke the deadlock through Ninković.

As the first-half wore on, Adelaide continued to be stretched defensively and survived a barrage of pressure to remain in the contest heading into the break.

A moment of magic was required to restore parity and Mileusnic answered Adelaide’s call, unleashing a sensational curling shot into the top left corner on his weaker foot on 67 minutes.

Graham Arnold’s side then pressed for a winner, but custodian Paul Izzo proved decisive, producing two key saves.

However, Bobo scored for the hosts to defeat Adelaide in a truly enthralling affair.

Key moments:

12’ | Nikola Mileusnic races down the right wing and his cross if flicked on by Karim Matmour to Ryan Kitto and shoots straight at Andrew Redmayne.

19’ | GOAL: Bobo releases Alex Brosque and plays in Ninković, who cuts inside onto his right foot before slotting the ball past Izzo.

33’ | Mierzejewski fires a shot which is comfortable for Izzo to catch.

36’ | Izzo makes an instinctive save to prevent Bobo from doubling Sydney’s lead, as the Brazilian was quickest to react from an initial ricochet.

47’ | Ben Garuccio’s sublime, curling free-kick smacks the crossbar and leaving a hapless Redmayne rooted to the spot.

67’ | GOAL! Mileusnic gets Adelaide back on level terms with a moment of individual brilliance. The winger controls Gülüm’s long switch on the edge of the area before dispatching a stunning, left-footed curling strike into top corner.

81’ | Luke Wilkshire sends a long ball over the top to Matt Simon, however Izzo stands tall to parry his venomous shot.

84’ | Izzo pushes wide Bobo’s header from David Carney’s bouncing cross.

101’ | Mark Ochieng ventures down the left wing and his cut-back is flicked wide by Matmour. But the Algerian’s shot stays in and is recycled back into the box only for Ochieng to sky his shot outside the six-yard box.

111’ | Bobo nets the winner with a simple header off Mierzejewski’s bending set-piece delivery.

Match Details:

Tuesday, 21 November 2017
Westfield FFA Cup 2017 Grand Final
Sydney FC 2 (Ninković 19’ Bobo 111’)
Adelaide United 1 (Mileusnic 67’)
Venue: Allianz Stadium
Crowd: 13,452