Last Wednesday night saw NSW confirm its participants in the 2016 FFA Cup. Wollongong, Manly United, Bonnyrigg White Eagles, Sydney United and Marconi Stallions were all victorious and joined reigning NPL Champions Blacktown City in the cup proper.
Wollongong Wolves 1 (N Bernal 66’)
Wagga City Wanderers 0
The game was scoreless at half time before striker Nicolas Bernal popped up with a neat header in the 66th minute which gave Jacob Timpano’s team the advantage and overall victory. It came after the home side had a penalty saved a minute earlier.
It’s the second time the Wolves have progressed to the round of 32 after going through in 2014 when they bowed out to the Central Coast Mariners.
Manly United FC 1 (R Cardozo 76’)
Mounties Wanderers 0
Manly United’s new recruit made an instant impact as Richie Cardozo rocketed Paul Dee’s men to a round of 32 placing with a 1-0 victory over NPL2 NSW side Mounties Wanderers.
Cardozo, who signed with the club earlier this week, scored in the 76th minute that separated the two teams in what was a tense affair played out at a chilly Cromer Park.
Parramatta FC 3 (A Vais 12’, M Sama 23’, D Rezo 72’ pen)
Bonnyrigg White Eagles 5 (M Gil 10’, A Peterson 53’, R Younis 66’, Y Kokado 87’, A Kadric 90’)
Eight goals. Two red cards. Two penalties.
In a game that had it all, Bonnyrigg White Eagles won in a thriller, 5-3 over a spirited nine-man Parramatta FC side at Melita Stadium.
The 2015 PS4 NPL NSW Men’s Champions took an early lead in the 10th minute as Mun-Soo Gil opened the scoring. But Parramatta responded almost immediately as Andrew Vais equalised in the 12th minute before Marco Sama put Franco Cosentino’s men in the lead in the 23rd minute.
It was the second half that brought out the thrills and spills that made this match the firecracker it was.
Robust striker Aaron Peterson put the White Eagles back on level terms in the 53rd minute.
A mini-melee saw Ante Tomic see red for Parramatta FC in the 58th minute before goalkeeper Luke Turnbull was also given his marching orders in the 63rd minute, consequently giving away a penalty.
Robbie Younis stepped up and had his penalty saved by reserve keeper Jayden Diacono but got on the end of the rebound to gift his side a 3-2 lead.
With 9 men, the home side failed to give up and were awarded a penalty in the 72nd minute with an unnecessary shove by Ray Miller. Daniel Rezo duly converted it was 3:3 with plenty to play for.
It seemed like the game was destined for extra time as the home side pushed everyone behind the half-way line.
But three minutes from time Yuta Kokado broke Parramatta FC hearts with a goal in the 87th minute, followed by 90th minute goal as rising youngster Asmir Kadric. The win sealed Bonnyrigg’s first appearance in the Westfield FFA Cup.
Sydney United 58 FC 2 (C Payne 16’, T Uskok 35’)
Sydney Olympic 1 (M Gaitatzis 22’)
Two former NSL giants went toe to toe with current NPLNSW leaders Sydney United 58 FC proving too strong for Sydney Olympic.
Chris Payne got Mark Rudan’s men off to the best possible start with a well taken goal in the 16th minute.
The Reds then won a penalty in the 20th minute but failed to capitalise via the always consistent Panni Nikas who had his spot kick well saved by Olympic ‘keeper Paul Henderson.
Two minutes later and the scores were level.
A fantastic free kick via Michael Gaitatzis bamboozled Tom Manos in the United 58 FC goal and it was game on.
That score didn’t last long however as former Central Coast Mariners player Tomislav Uskok swooped in from a Nikas free-kick to give the home side the lead.
In what were some tense moments for both teams soon after, the game fizzled in the end with the Reds marching onto the main stage of the FFA Cup.
Marconi Stallions 2 (B Vella 14’, S Perre 73’)
Bankstown Berries 0
Marconi Stallions grabbed the headlines at home with a hard fought 2-0 victory over fellow rivals Bankstown Berries.
The star of the show was Stallions keeper Chad Taylor who kept Jeff Suzor’s men in the match with a number of crucial saves but it was goals in each half, one by Brandon Vella in the 14th minute and the other in the 73rd minute via Sam Perre that sealed the Stallions fate and spot into the next round of the Westfield FFA Cup.
The draw for the FFA Cup’s Round of 32 will take place on either 29th or 30th of June, 2016.
And with the NSW’s FFA Cup participants decided, the state’s Waratah Cup draw was also determined.
In the first Play-Off Match, Blacktown City were drawn against NPL rivals Bonnyrigg White Eagles, with the match to take place at Lily’s Football Stadium. The winner will face Manly United in the semi final.
On the other side of the draw, Marconi will host Wollongong Wolves with the winner to face Sydney United in the second Semi Final.
The host of the Waratah Cup Final will come from the winner of Semi-Final 1.
Wednesday 8th June
Play-Off Match 1 (POM1): Blacktown City v Bonnyrigg White Eagles
Play-Off Match 2 (POM2): Marconi Stallions v Wollongong Wolves
Wednesday 22nd June
Semi-Final 1 (SF1): Manly United v Winner POM1
Semi-Final 2 (SF2): Sydney United 58 v Winner POM2
Sunday 10th July
Winner SF1 v Winner SF2
Quotes and Title Photo via Football NSW