Melbourne Victory are through to the Hyundai A-League 2018 Grand Final after their 3-2 win over Sydney FC in the extra time thriller match at Allianz Stadium on Saturday.
The hero of the match was without a doubt Terry Antonis whose emotional extra time goal booked Melbourne Victory’s place in the Grand Final where they will meet Newcastle Jets.
Stefan Nigro scored an own goal in the 24th minute to put Sydney ahead, after Mierzejewski’s inswinging free-kick thumped into his chest and nestled in the bottom corner.
Kosta Barbarouses equalised in the 31st minute after firing a shot that deflected in off Jordy Buijs, wrong-footing Andrew Redmayne.
Victory went ahead in the 47th minute. Barbarouses reeled in Brillante’s stray pass and slipped the ball into Berisha’s feet. Surrounded by Sydney FC defenders, the striker kept his cool to squeeze a pass out to the far post for an unmarked James Troisi to tap home.
With 5 minute added to the clock and with 15 seconds left, it turned disastrous for Antonis after Thomas parried one golden chance for Bobo, Mierzejewski turned it back from the byline and the former Sydney FC midfielder somehow sliced into his own net.
The costly mistake left Antonis in tears as the game headed into extra time, which turned into a cagey affair with both teams seemingly settling for penalties.
But then in the 117th minute, pinned on the touchline at halfway, Antonis somehow wriggled free. He dribbles all the way into the box and then drove in the winner via a deflection of Alex Wilkinson.
“Emotionally it was crazy,” Antonis told Fox Sports after the win.
“To score an own goal and then score the winner is an amazing feeling.
“We had a game plan. All the boys stuck together and gave it their all to reach the Grand Final.
“To score that here, I can’t explain it.”