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Sydney FC 

It had to be. After 27 games, 20 wins, 4 draws and 3 losses, a 42 positive goal difference and 64 goals in total - a new A-League r***** (see here) - and 17 points ahead of second-placed Newcastle Jets, Sydney FC received the Premiers Plate and players and team staff their own premiers medallions. 

Congratulations to all concerned. It's the fourth bit of silverware for the team in two seasons. 

In terms of the match last night, Sydney FC defeated Melbourne Victory 1-0 with an 8th minute goal to Bobo. It was his 27th goal in 27 games - yet another r*****.

  • As Ray Gatt says here, it wasn't a great performance from Sydney FC but they also didn't need it. Gatt reports that an "emotional Graham Arnold" said they're not done yet. 
  • 'Another game, another r*****' writes Carly Adno who reminds us that it's more than two years since Melbourne Victory actually had a victory over Sydney FC.
  • Dom Bossi notes the same thing - that Sydney FC has extended their "hoodoo" over Melbourne Victory and writes of "no shortage of r******".  

Women's Asian Cup 2018 

Still on the subject of winners, the Matildas qualified for the 2019 Women's World Cup in the early hours of this morning, along with Japan, when Samantha Kerr (pictured) equalised with reigning champions Japan to make it 1-1 in the 86th minute. Japan had scored 23 minutes earlier through Mizuho Sakaguchi. Until Kerr popped-up to force the ball into the bottom corner of the net, it looked like Australia was headed for a fifth place play-off against the Philippines. South Korea won the other group game, 4-1 v Vietnam. 

Anna Harrington writes here that for much of the game time in the Asian Cup against top quality opposition in Japan and South Korea, the Matildas were found wanting where it counted - scoring goals. 

Australia meet Thailand in the semi-final on Tuesday at 11.45pm AEST.

Asian Cup 2019

Australia has been seeded with hosts UAE plus South Korea, Japan, Iran and Saudi Arabia in Pot 1 of the Asian Cup Draw, which takes place on 4 May. 

A-League 

Michael Lynch is back! And here he is noting that the A-League finals gives the A-League the fillip they need, with potential for thrills and upsets, after a disappointing season in terms of crowds, TV figures and the internecine and protracted battle at the top of the game.

Wellington Phoenix v Melbourne City, Saturday 5.35pm AEST

  • Melbourne Victory's loss sees Melbourne City secure third position, whatever the result in this evening's game, but Warren Joyce wants to maintain the winning momentum. The only fly in the ointment is an question mark over Michael Jakobsen's fitness

Central Coast v Newcastle Jets, Saturday 7.50pm AEST

  • With new coach, Mike Mulvey, in the stands, Central Coast players will be keen to impress the new boss tonight, while Newcastle will be desperate to halt the tide of three losses on the trot as teams head into the finals. 

Perth Glory v Brisbane Roar, Saturday 10pm AEST

  • Brett Holman counsels his younger (not that there are many who are younger) team mates just to focus on the game in hand against Perth Glory, not think about the 'what if's' that come with it, including the game they have no control over played on Sunday. 
  • Unfortunately for Brisbane, the injury 'curse' has hit again with defender Daniel Bowles ruled-out after rolling his ankle at training. 

Western Sydney Wanderers v Adelaide United, Sunday 5pm AEST

  • Where's Roly? That's what Gatt is wondering after noting that Roly Bonevacia has been "strangely absent" for several weeks. (Has anyone checked that he is okay?). Gatt writes that the usually reliable first-team player reportedly had a falling-out with Josep Gombau after the loss to Melbourne City, and Gombau was testy when asked about him after training yesterday. 
  • And another article on the scheduling of the final round of matches - this time "playing into the hands of" Western Sydney Wanderers.  

FFA Cup

  • Preview of Saturday afternoon's FFA Cup match between MetroStars and Campbelltown City in Adelaide, two "powerhouse clubs" of the local competition. 

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