No Cup three-peat for Gold Coast City

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Surfers Paradise players come together as one after scoring the winning goal

Rafe Griffin (@rafegriffin)

Surfers Paradise have earned a well-deserved 1-0 victory at the Mallawa Complex on Wednesday evening to ensure Gold Coast City won’t be in the running for another appearance in the FFA Cup final 32.

Despite being without the services of leading strike weapon Lyndon Dykes, who missed the match under a ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ after his early season departure from Gold Coast City, a lone Wade Russell goal with just over ten minutes to play ensured Apollo’s passage through to round six.

Inside the first minute, City’s Lochlan Reus skidded a free kick from 25 yards out on a wet pitch caused by a pre-game shower. The dead-ball opportunity not enough to truly test Apollo keeper Faider Royer-Metia.

Surfers had their first chance when Burcin Yorulmaz weaved his way in the box where he provided a low cross away forcing the home side’s defence to scramble out for a corner.

Both sides employed a high pressing game that resulted in a struggle to retain possession in key areas resulting in opportunities to be few and far between.

The best chance of the half came the visitors’ way on the half hour when Burcin Yorulmaz clattered the ball into the upright.

That saw Surfers continue to gain in confidence and assert their influence on the game. Another opportunity coming from a poor Shane Viitakangas goal kick that ended up going short and straight to Burcin Yorulmaz with a speculative shot falling just wide of the upright.

Defensive confusion almost saw Apollo concede a goal from a Gold Coast City free kick. Two defenders and Royer-Metia got in a tangle that Jarrod almost took advantage of but the defence recovered to halt his progress.

After the break, Royer-Metia was again in the thick of the action pulling off a brave save to deny a City opener.

Midway through the second half, the match began to open up a little more as both sides chased a result inside the 90 minutes.

That resulted in Burcin Yorulmaz performing a delightful turn just outside the box with a one-touch shot on goal that Viitakangas was forced to tip at full stretch over the bar.

City finally buckled after a well-worked Apollo move in the penalty box. High tempo lead-up play resulted in Brandon Gomez cutting back for Russell near the penalty spot and he duly tucked away past Viitakangas.

City coach Grae Piddick rang the changes after the goal including taking off skipper Justyn McKay. That almost paid off when Apollo were forced to scramble on their goal line with seven minutes remaining.

Further potential headaches for Apollo when Jarrod Kyle attempted a header on target in the dying minutes and then Rhys Saunders threatened but they were able to hold on and set up a next-round match-up against another NPL club, SWQ Thunder.

In other games played this evening:

In Townsville, two Jono Bagley goals within three minutes has seen the Northern Fury record their first competitive win of the season accounting for Rebels FC. The Fury’s next opponents will be the FNQ Heat.

In Brisbane:
Capital 1 club Moggill Football Club has sprung a major upset to oust NPL club Olympic FC 4-1.

Redlands United FC are through after a 2-1 defeat of Pine Rivers.

Lions FC remain on track for another round of 32 appearance after defeating Western Pride FC 4-1.

Southside Eagles Football Club will be the second Capital 1 club to remain alive after accounting for Acacia Ridge 2-1 after extra time.

Gold Coast City 0 v Surfers Paradise Apollo 1 (Wade Russell 78’)

Statistics

Possession: 41-59

Corners: 5-4

Shots on target: 4-3

Shots off target: 4-2

Gold Coast City: Shane Viitakangas, Matt Jones, Tim Jackson, Drew Jeskey, Justyn McKay, Jarrod Kyle, Ben Litfin, Lochlan Reus, Rhys Saunders, Daniel Dragecevic, Jordan Lampard. Subs: Roman Hofman, Martin Vasquez, Eoghan Murphy, Rees Duncan, Josh Langdon.

Surfers Paradise: Faider Royer-Metia, Bruno Rodriguez, Jean-Phillipe Lasm, Acim Tomic, Jack Boxell, Tolga Yorulmaz, Wade Russell, Davide Landoni, Nikki Felizato, Brandon Gomez, Burcin Yorulmaz. Subs: Cian Cuba, Shota Nakagawa, Tommaso Confalonieri, Borko Tomic, Ken Muir.

Referee: Avi Cohen. Assistant referees: Mitch Miller, Chris Young.

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