Floreat Athena Ultimate Guide: WA club could throw an FFA Cup surprise

Floreat Athena gave Hyundai A-League club Melbourne City a huge scare in their maiden FFA Cup appearance in 2016. Can the WA heavyweights overcome the challenge of Adelaide Olympic in South Australia?

Perth-based Floreat look well poised for their second crack at the Round of 32 – which will see them take on Olympic on Wednesday 24 July.

The four-time WA champions booked their ticket following a penalty shootout win over Sorrento in June, winning 4-3 on spot kicks after the tie finished 1-1 after extra time.

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Adelaide Olympic v Floreat Athena

Under the guidance of coach Garrett McDuling, Floreat play an eye-catching brand of football.

The former club of WA legends Bobby Despotovski and Stan Lazaridis have also showed they’ve got grit too, having prevailed in three penalty shootouts already this year, after wins against Rockingham and Bayswater in the WA Night Series and their triumph over Sorrento.

Feature image credit: FotoEnzo

WATCH: Floreat progressed to the Round of 32 on penalties

Profile

Founded: 1951

Competition: NPL Western Australia

Home ground: Litis Stadium

Honours: Premier League Championships (1977, 1988, 1997, 2007)

Stats Association Cups (1987, 1988, 1989, 1997, 2009, 2016)

Premier League Night Series (1977, 1985, 1997, 2000, 2011, 2015, 2018, 2019)

First Division Titles (1973, 1981)

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History

Originally established as the Athena Club in 1951, the club entered a team to compete in the third division of the WA state league.

By 1960, Athena were in the top-flight, and it has since been a stalwart of the state league over the six decades.

One of the founding clubs in the newly formed WA football federation, Athena had outgrown its Wellington Square home in the 1970s and moved to Perry Lakes Stadium in Floreat – and so became Floreat Athena.

The club won its first major trophy in 1977 – the first division premiership – but the 1980s were its golden era, where it would finish on top of the ladder five times. Floreat’s traditional rivals are Stirling Lions and Perth SC.

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Floreat
Floreat were beaten 2-1 by eventual winners Melbourne City in 2016

Key Players

He turns 37 on July 11 but there’s no writing off how important Adrian Madaschi is for Mcduling’s men.

The ex-Caltex Socceroo and Hyundai A-League defender has experience plying his trade in Italy, Scotland, South Korea and will be crucial in keeping Athena organised in the City of Churches.

In midfield, captain Dean Evans – a former youth star for Perth Glory who won back to back player of the year awards for the club in 2009/10 and 2010/11 – is a commanding presence in the middle third with a range of passes in his arsenal.

Meanwhile, forward Robert Petkov has experience playing in the lower tiers of German football for ASV Veitsbronn-Siegelsdorf.

Madaschi
Madaschi in Caltex Socceroos training in 2009. He made five appearances for Australia

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Round of 32 Match Details

Adelaide Olympic v Floreat Athena
Date: Wednesday, 24 July 2019
Venue: Valo Football Centre
Kick-off: 7.30pm AEST
Click here for ticket details

FFA Cup Round of 32: Adelaide Olympic v Floreat Athena

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