Adelaide United have won the Westfield FFA Cup in the inaugural season of the competition, defeating Perth Glory 1-0 at Coopers Stadium on Tuesday night.
A goal from Sergio Cirio was enough to secure glory for the Reds, as they defeated a ten-man Perth side at Coopers in front of a sell-out 16,142 people.
With an electric atmosphere buzzing around Coopers, the match started at a fast pace – both teams eager to press their opposition and try and retain possession for as long as possible. As a result both teams struggled to manufacture clear-cut chances in the opening stages.
The first real effort on goal came in the 19th minute through Marcelo Carrusca, but the Argentine’s strike from 25 yards out failed to truly test Glory goalkeeper, Danny Vukovic.
But Carrusca’s effort was a sign of good things to come for the Reds, as they started exerting their dominance in the middle of the park and passed the ball around with confidence.
Just before halftime United looked set to take a deserved lead when Bruce Djite played Awer Mabil through, one-on-one with Vukovic, yet Mabil blazed his effort wide of the mark.
Following the break, things started just as intensely as the first and just before the hour mark the Glory were reduced to ten men when right-back, Joshua Risdon, received his second yellow after he professionally fouled Carrusca to break up play.
And in the 67th minute the pressure on the Glory defence proved too much as the Reds took the lead after Carrusca played through Sergio Cirio, the Spaniard finishing effectively after rounding Vukovic.
From here the Reds settled and began knocking the ball around, playing to their extra man advantage and slowly, but surely, tiring the Perth players.
After the match, United manager, Josep Gombau, said it was hard to describe his and his sides' happiness following their triumph.
“We are so happy,” Gombau said.
“All the group and all the people that are working in the club – for us it is important to win something.
“I think that we deserved it because in the cup we played against four Hyundai A-League sides and we won every single game and now is the moment for us to enjoy.”
Mark Viduka Medal winner, Cirio, reiterated his coach’s comments and added that, on a personal note, it was the most significant trophy win of his career.
“This is the most important trophy I have (won) in my career and I am very happy because we have won it in front of our supporters and I think, like Josep said, we deserved it,” Cirio said.
Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Westfield FFA Cup Final
Adelaide United 1
Perth Glory 0
Venue: Coopers Stadium, Hindmarsh
Adelaide United: Galekovic (c), Marrone, Boogaard, McGowan, Isaias, Cirio, Carrusca (Pablo Sanchez 80'), Djite (Watson 86'), Mabil (Ferreira 59'), Jeggo, Elrich
Perth Glory: Vukovic, Griffiths, Djulbic, Zadkovich, Keogh, Marinkovic (MacLaren 79'), Garcia, Risdon, De Silva (Sidnei 45'), Jamieson, Thwaite (c)
Scorers: Cirio (67')
Red cards: Risdon (58')
Yellow cards: Garcia (32'), Risdon (42', 58'), Isaias (69')