All the talk after another dazzling performance by dynamic duo Danny Choi and Patrick Antelmi was of a move up to the Hyundai A-League - though their coach at PS4 NPL club Blacktown has stressed their supersonic rise is thanks largely to a well-structured City unit.
The pair have been in scintillating form in the FFA Cup and PS4 NPL this season and have surely put A-League clubs on notice.
The front two were integral in City's stunning 6-2 win in the Round of 32 against Sydney United 58 a few weeks ago.
And Blacktown created a little piece of history on Wednesday night, becoming the first NPL club from NSW into the Westfield FFA Cup quarter-finals.
They progressed at the expense of fellow NSW outfit Bonnyrigg White Eagles, with Choi and Antelmi starring in the 3-0 win at Lily Homes Stadium
City coach Mark Crittenden lauded his attackers' performance in rainy conditions but stressed it was his team’s commitment to their structure that allowed their individual brilliance to shine.
“Danny Choi has obviously hit the limelight with his goal from 70-odd metres which excites a lot of people and young Patty [Antelmi] has done very well – he’s scored five goals in the two games,” Crittenden told www.ffacup.com.au on Thursday.
“Those sorts of things don’t happen without a lot of hard work but it’s a bit hard to single out two boys after an effort like that.
“The whole squad worked together, they’re organised and obviously without their input Danny and Patty don’t get the service they get.”
Manly’s Adam Parkhouse became the latest product from the PS4 NPL to be snapped up by an A-League club when Wellington Phoenix signed the winger last week.
Crittenden was confident his star pair also have what it takes to make the step up but confirmed there was yet to be any formal interest.
However with Choi carving up down the flanks (and awaiting an Australian visa which it’s hoped will arrive in six weeks time) and Antelmi leading the goal scoring charts in the Cup they have certainly put themselves in the A-League shop window.
“Danny’s got wonderful pace, he’s got great vision and he’s got a great left leg,” said Crittenden.
“Two of his crosses led to two of our goals, so he’s got wonderful feet.
“Patty’s just a goal poacher. He just knows where the goals and puts himself in the right position and once again he’s got a super left leg.
“He just knows where to be as a striker.”
There will be little rest for the Demons following their progression to the Cup’s last eight, with Blacktown set to take on minor-premiers Sydney United 58 FC for a spot in the NSW NPL Grand Final this weekend.
Crittenden said his side didn’t have any injury concerns following last night’s win and wasn’t concerned about the short around ahead of Sunday’s huge clash at Sydney United Sports Centre.
“When you’re playing finals and games that are as big as these ones it’s probably not hard to back up mentally,” said Crittenden.
“I think physically will be the biggest problem. Obviously we had a tough one against Manly [United] on Sunday and another hard one last night in that rain.
“I think physically we’ve just got to try and get them up but mentally they’ll be right for it because the reason you play footy is for finals.”
As to who Crittenden would like to draw next Wednesday night following the completion of the Round of 16 the coach was non-committal.
“We’ll just take whoever they put in front of us. It would be lovely to get an A-League club but at the end of the day whoever we get, we’ll turn up and try and do our best."