Melbourne City’s road to the November 30 Westfield FFA Cup final has seen some hard-fought wins, cracking goals, rampant performances and, of course, that memorable derby.
John van ‘t Schip’s side has got stronger as the competition has gone on to get into their first major final and just 90 minutes away from the club’s first piece of silverware.
In trips to Perth and Brisbane, plus two home ties, they’ve scored 10 goals along the way from their four matches, with seven different scorers. Pretty impressive stuff.
Here's how City got to the November 30 decider at AAMI Park against Sydney FC.
Round of 32: Floreat Athena 1-2 Melbourne City
City didn’t have it all their own way at Dorrien Gardens against the PS4 NPL WA club. Nick Fitzgerald’s powerful low drive just after the half hour mark gave them a deserved lead at the break.
But a Cup shock looked on the cards when Kris Gate equalised on the hour mark, before Anthony Caceres spared City’s blushes with a fine long-range strike into the top corner.
Round of 16: Brisbane Strikers 1-2 Melbourne City
Tim Cahill’s first competitive match for City saw a Strikers' attendance record to see if the home side could spoil the Caltex Socceroo star's party.
And the Strikers put up an excellent display, going in front 11 minutes before the break through defender Greig Henslee’s goal.
Henslee went from hero to villain three minutes later as he gave away a penalty – which Bruno Fornaroli converted – before the Uruguayan scored a second spot-kick 12 minutes from time to see City through.
Quarter Final: Melbourne City 4-1 Western Sydney Wanderers
The Wanderers were supposed to be a stern test for the home side but City dominated from the moment Michael Jakobsen scored with a spectacular overhead kick inside two minutes.
Further goals from Fornaroli and Cahill – his first for the club – plus a red card to Wanderers skipper Nikolai Topor-Stanley meant the contest was over by half-time.
Fernando Brandan got his name on the scoresheet after the break and despite Dimas pulling one back for the visitors, this was City’s night and a huge statement made ahead of the start of the Hyundai A-League season.
Semi Final: Melbourne Victory 0-2 Melbourne City
In a physical, fiery and - at times - controversial semi-final, City won through to their first major final thanks to a goal in each half.
Luke Brattan sent them on their way on nine minutes with an arrowing strike from outside the box into the bottom which gave keeper Lawrence Thomas no chance.
Victory would argue Cahill obstructed the keeper's line of vision. But any hope Victory had of forcing extra-time ended 13 minutes from time when Brandan tapped in from close range from Fitzgerald’s initial blocked attempt.