Sydney FC Champions Again!! Twice!!

Sydney FC have completed a league and Grand Final double in style in the PS4 NPL NSW Men’s 2 division, demolishing Western Sydney Wanderers 4-1 at Leichhardt Oval.

Sydney FC 4 (Antoniou 29’, Arditti 34’, Zapata 37’, Lokolingoy 60’) defeated Western Sydney Wanderers 1 (Najjar 26’)

The Wanderers took the lead in the 26th minute through Najjar but after that it became the demolition derby.

Goals from Antoniou, Arditti and Zapata within the space of eight minutes secured a 3-1 lead for the Sky Blues at the break.

Lokolingoy made it four with a deft chip early in the second half while Curtis, Zapata and Kuleski also had good chances.

The win wraps up the league and Championship double for Sydney FC in the NPL, having also gained promotion to NPL 1 by finishing top of the Club Championship.

The Sky Blues under 20’s team also won their Grand Final earlier in the day wrapping up another league and Championship double with a 2-1 (aet) win over Western Sydney Wanderers.

The results give Head Coach Rob Stanton a total of seven titles from seven in the past year with his young squad, who now break before the Foxtel National Youth League kicks off later this year.

Sydney FC’s Matthew Green was named man of the match while earlier in the day the Sky Blues under 18’s were runners up in their competition going 2-1 in the Grand Final.

 

What They Said

Head Coach Robbie Stanton: “I think they deserved it both teams. We had to work hard today and in the end we got our rewards.

“I’m very happy for the players and proud of them, I think this is their moment and they deserve the credit, I can’t thank them enough.

"I think it’s seven competitions we’ve now won in a row. We started well with good intent and got on a roll. We’ve picked the right players and stuck by them and have developed them.  We’ve done things consistently and have got the right outcomes.

“This group of players are only going to get better, not many teams do the double and I’m very proud of them.

“I’m happy for all of my staff as well who have been unbelievable, Michael Swibel, Ian MacKenzie, Matt and Adam, our conditioning coach Frank as well as David Zdrilic and Miro Vlastelica in the NYL, it’s been a team effort.”

Goals

26’ NAJJAR GOAL – Against the run of play Morfitis finds some space on the right side of the box and lofts a ball into the centre of the box where Moudi Najjar prods home despite Evans getting a hand to the ball.

29’ ANTONIOU GOAL – Lokolingoy finds space on the right and drives into the penalty box. He crosses to Antoniou who has his first shot saved before burying the rebound.

34’ ARDITTI GOAL – Zapata receives the ball and drives towards the centre of goal. His initial pass to Arditti is intercepted but falls kindly to allow Zapata a shot on goal. He fires with his right foot across the keeper who parries the ball to Arditti who fires into an empty net.

37’ ZAPATA GOAL – Zapata picks the ball up on the edge of the box and runs at the Western Sydney Wanderers defence. He dribbles around three defenders, keeping his balance before driving a low shot beyond the keeper.

60’ LOKOLINGOY GOAL – Lokolingoy receives the ball in the centre of the Wanderers half, he shrugs off the attentions of his marker and shows a clean pair of heels to another Wanderers defender before dispatching a perfect chip over the advancing keeper.

 

Key Moments

5’ ANTONIOU HITS THE POST – Araujo gets clear on the right hand side to cross into the six yard box for Antonio whose side foot effort hits the inside of the post and bounces out to Lokolingoy. The Congolese born striker has to turn to fire a shot through the Wanderers’ retreating defence, which the keeper does well to hold.

12’ ANTONIOU FIRES OVER – The ball falls to Antoniou on the edge of the box but the winger drills his swerving shot just over the bar and away to the keeper’s right.

35’ MORFITIS CHANCE – Evans comes off his line in the Sydney FC goal to try to clear but it only goes as far as Morfitis, however his attempted lob goes over.

42’ ANTONIOU SHOT TIPPED OVER – Antoniou does brilliantly to win the ball on the right, tackling his defender before running at goal to hit a powerful left foot shot towards the top corner which the keeper does well to tip over.

51’ CURTIS CHANCE – Evans goalkick is taken on the chest by Curtis wide left in his own half. He beats the challenge of one player who appears to be holding his shirt, and drives down the left wing into the opposition half. He proceeds to nutmeg two Wanderers players and bears down on goal from the left wing with only the keeper to beat. His final touch just lets him down however and his shot is tame and just past the keeper’s right hand upright.

55’ MCGING SAVING TACKLE – Wanderers move their attack from right to left and have Fox as the spare man on their left hand side. He is played the ball and shoots but McGing makes a brilliant lunging block to push his goal bound shot wide of the post.

63’ ZAPATA SHOT SAVED – Sydney FC break with some neat inter-play between Antoniou and Zapata which ends with the latter firing a left foot strike which the Wanderers keeper is down low to save.

71’ EVANS SAVE – Fox tries to curl a right foot shot inside the far post from the Wanderers left wing but Evans is across smartly to push around the post.

92’ KULESKI HITS THE POST – A Kuleski free kick on the right edge of the box is curled around the wall but hits the bottom of the left hand post.

 

Team News

Sydney FC 4 (Antoniou 29’, Arditti 34’, Zapata 37’, Lokolingoy 60’) Western Sydney Wanderers 1 (Najjar 26’)

Head Coach Rob Stanton was without centre half George Timotheou who has recently signed professional terms with the Sky Blues and was also away on national team duty with Chris Zuvela while Christian Gonzalez is injured.

Attendance: 1,611

Ground: Leichhardt Oval

Referee: Christopher YOUNG

 

Sydney FC: 1. Mitchell EVANS (GK), 2. Brendan CURTIS, 3. Liam MCGING, 6. Nicola KULESKI, 7. Daniel ARAUJO, 8. Juan ZAPATA, 9. Bai ANTONIOU (16. Sam McILLHATTON 90’), 10. Andreas AGAMEMNONOS (19. Daniel MASKIN 74’), 11. Christopher ARDITTI, 12. Charles LOKOINGOY (17. Emmanuel GONZALEZ 90’), 13. Matthew GREEN.

Subs not used: 20. Nicholas SORRAS, 14. John IREDALE.

Yellow cards: Zapata.

Red cards: None

 

Western Sydney Wanderers: 18. Matthew SYMES (GK), 3. Henry DAVIES, 4. Abdelrahman KUKU, 11. Mathieu CORDIER (19. Malcolm WARD 38’), 12. Lawrence HANNA, 14. Brenton FOX (42. Matthew LECCE 72’), 16. Jordan MORFITIS (24. Taccettin KUMSUZ 45’), 20. Charles ABOU SERHAL, 25. Kosta GROZOS, 33. Moudi NAJJAR, 35. Lachlan CAMPBELL

Subs not used: 2. Tate RUSSELL, 6. Keanu BACCUS, 7. Kyle CIMENTI, 8. Cameron DEVLIN, 10. Tariq MAIA, 15. Ramy NAJJARINE, 30. Daniel AXFORD.

Yellow cards: Fox, Abou Serhal, Campbell.

Red cards: None.

Sydney FC Memberships are now on sale for the Hyundai A-League season 2016/17.  Click here to become part of the Sky Blues family.