Could fairytale club Hume City pull off an upset of epic proportions and make the Westfield FFA Cup final? Hyundai A-League champions Melbourne Victory stand in the way of the plucky Victorian part-timers.
Westfield FFA Cup 2015 Semi Finals – Match Day 2
Hume City v Melbourne Victory
Wednesday, 28 October 2015
AAMI Park, Melbourne
Kick-off: 7:30pm local (7:30pm AEDT)
Referee: Ben Williams
Assistant Referee 1: Luke Brennan
Assistant Referee 2: Wilson Brown
Fourth Official: George Lakrindis
AAR 1: Shaun Evans
AAR 2: Jonathan Barreiro
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TV Broadcast: Live and exclusive on FOX SPORTS 505 from 7:00pm (AEDT)
Radio Broadcast: ABC Grandstand Digital, online and on the ABC Radio Mobile App
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Hume City squad: 1.Chris OLDFIELD (gk), 7.Jai INGHAM, 8.Theodore MARKELIS, 11.Ivan PAVLAK, 12.Daniel CLARK, 13.Shane REXHEPI, 16.Matthew HENNESSEY, 17.Marcus SCHROEN, 18.Bradley WALKER, 19.Sammy BENINATO, 20.Tom BANFIELD (gk), 22.Reis AYGUN, 23.Josh MARKOVSKI, 25.Souheil AZAGANE, 27.Yusef MOHAMED, 34.Jordan FAHIM, 36.Samuel RIAK, 39.Nick HEGARTY
Unavailable: 4.Isyan ERDOGAN (suspended)
Melbourne Victory squad: 1.Danny VUKOVIC (gk), 2.Jason GERIA, 3.Scott GALLOWAY, 5.Daniel GEORGIEVSKI, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 7.Gui FINKLER, 8.Besart BERISHA, 9.Kosta BARBAROUSES, 11.Connor PAIN, 13.Oliver BOZANIC, 14.Fahid BEN KHALFALLAH, 16.Rashid MAHAZI, 17.Matthieu DELPIERRE, 18.Dylan MURNANE, 19.George HOWARD, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 21.Carl VALERI, 22.Jesse MAKAROUNAS, 24.Thomas DENG
On paper, Victory will progress to the Westfield FFA Cup final against Perth Glory with ease
Not only are Victory in-season having played three rounds of the Hyundai A-League, they have a star-studded squad, are playing at 'home' on the pristine AAMI Park pitch and are hungry for more success after last season's A-League double.
And after a loss last Friday night in Newcastle, they'll be stinging. Not a great time to meet the bruised behemoth.
If Hume somehow manage to get a result it would easily be the greatest shock of the competition's two year history, and one of the biggest in the history of club football in this country.
But this is Cup football....
And as Lou Acevski’s Hume have shown throughout their charge to the semis, they can never be discounted. The Melbourne club has been on cloud nine ever since winning through to the last four after their epic 3-2 extra-time win over Oakleigh Cannons last month, the latest chapter in their fairytale that began with a thrilling Round of 32 victory over Brisbane Strikers.
The playing group has shown a tremendous amount of spirit, tenacity and no shortage of quality to make it this far.
And now this bunch of part-timers need just one more massive performance to achieve something even more special.
Marcus Schroen, who has scored in every round for the PS4 NPL club, will again be crucial to their chances. Ex-Victory midfielder Theo Markelis has caught the eye with every FFA Cup appearance and will relish a shot at his former club, while Jai Ingham and Nick Hegarty also bring some experience a threat to their side.
Hume will be buoyed by their recent friendly against Victory, which ended 4-3 to the A-League side but only after they struck twice in the dying minutes.
For Victory, it will be interesting to see how they back up from their shock 1-0 loss to the Jets in the A-League last Friday night.
But with Berisha, Ben Khalfallah, Finkler, Bozanic and co. in their line-up they have to start as raging favourites. They lacked a cutting edge against the Jets but Hume are out of season.
If Victory can find their range in front of goal, it spells trouble for City.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
League: PS4 NPL Victoria
Current ladder position: Finished fifth in PS4 NPL Victoria
Latest result: Beat a youthful Melbourne City 2-0 in a friendly match on October 16
Who to watch out for: Marcus Schroen
Official site: http://humecityfc.com/
League: Hyundai A-League
Current ladder position: Sixth in the Hyundai A-League
Latest result: Lost 1-0 against Newcastle Jets on Friday night
Who to watch out for: Besart Berisha
Official site: www.melbournevictory.com.au