Sydney FC Wins the 2019 A-League Grand Final
Published: 19 May 2019 Image credit: Getty Images
Hard-fought Grand Final won by Sydney FC in penalty shootout
Sydney FC won the 2019 A-League Grand Final against the premiers Perth Glory. Both teams gave it their all with the game going into extra time and then a penalty shootout. Sydney FC emerged victorious 4-1.
The Premiers, Perth Glory, met the second-placed finishers Sydney FC in this year's A-League Grand Final.
The game was held for the first time at Optus Stadium in Perth, in front of an A-League Grand Final record attendance of 56,371 fans.
Only twice in A-League history has any team won an A-League Grand Final outside of their home state (Sydney FC in 2009/10, Melbourne Victory in 2017/18). Combining this with the fact that Perth Glory have lost only one of their last 10 A-League games on home turf (W8, D1), Perth Glory coach Tony Popovic was going into this match with great confidence.
Popovic was in familiar territory having guided the Western Sydney Wanderers to three Grand Finals. He refreshed Perth Glorym, and they have rewarded him with a remarkable season.
Sydney FC is not a team to be written off easily though. This was Sydney FC’s fifth appearance in an A-League Grand Final (W3, L1). And, Sydney FC have won 10 of their last 11 A-League games against Perth Glory, including a 3-0 win in their only post-season clash (semi-final, 2016/17).
The game kicked off and the teams were very evenly matched. You could tell you were watching the top two teams in the country. Each team taking the ball, getting into attacking positions and having shots on goal.
Perth Glory had two shots on goal within the first five minutes but couldn't find the back of the net. Andrew Redmayne, Sydney FC's goalkeeper, handled anything that came to him with ease.
Shane Lowry of Perth Glory got the game's first yellow card in the 22nd minute.
In the 28th minute, Sydney FC's Adam Le Fondre slotted the ball past Liam Reddy but the offside flag went up straight away and Sydney fans were subjected to a nervous 60 seconds while the VAR analysed the footage. The goal was ruled offside, much to the frustration of Steve Corica, Sydney's coach, who was given a yellow card for his reaction to the decision.
Alex Brosque had to leave the pitch in the final minutes of the first half due to a cut on the back of his head after a clash with Matthew Spiranovic.
The second half found Perth Glory's Diego Castro with his eye in, with multiple shots on goal.
The 59th minute saw frustrations starting to show with Rhyan Grant making a heavy tackle on Perth's Jason Davidson.
Andy Keogh came off the bench for Perth in the 73rd minute. This seemed to inspire Perth Glory who went on the attack on Sydney's goal.
In the 88th minute Sydney FC's Rhyan Grant got a yellow card after another big tackle.
Three minutes of stoppage time was added and Sydney FC had a good opportunity in the 92nd minute with a free kick, however Perth's defence held firm.
Neither team could capitalise on the time added and the game went into extra time.
The 95th minute saw Alex Brosque leave the pitch having played his last A-League game.
Bodies and legs were getting tired but both teams still kept giving it their all.
No goals came in extra time and the Grand Final went to penalties. Both goalkeepers had been solid all night so the competition continued and all the fans were confident of a win for their team.
Andrew Redmayne proved the difference, saving two penalties. Reza Ghoochannejhad slotted the winning goal through for Sydney FC and the Sky Blues and their fans were jubilant. It was a sky blue night in Perth.