Melbourne City has progressed to the final four of the FFA Cup after a commanding performance against Western Sydney Wanderers at AAMI Park on Wednesday night.
Craig Noone opened the scoring in the 34th minute when he pounced on a poacher's effort from close range, before Jamie Maclaren doubled the hosts lead prior to half time with an exquisite finish. Noone secured his brace and a safe passage through to the Semi Finals for City when he latched onto Josh Brillante's piercing cross to curl his effort into the top corner.
Two changes were made to City’s lineup from their last FFA Cup contest against Marconi as Ramy Najjarine and Florin Berenguer started ahead of Javier Cabrera and Adrian Luna.
Jamie Maclaren retained his spot after returning from the Socceroos as he looked to continue his impressive goal-scoring form this pre-season.
After a perfect Wednesday afternoon, City returned to their abode of AAMI Park for the first time this season.
City started brighter of the two and it was a neat piece of work from Craig Noone that set up the first chance of the half. A wonderful first touch on the wing opened the door to the final third as his cross was just behind Jamie Maclaren who could only nod over the bar.
The hosts continued to press and Maclaren was in the thick of the action once again, finding joy behind the high Wanderers line.
Noone was the supplier once again after 17 minutes Maclaren got closer to goal with his second effort. The Englishman’s pinpoint cross found the Socceroos striker free in the penalty area as his volley was parried over the bar by Daniel Lopar.
With the run of play, City found the breakthrough via Noone as the former Bolton man pounced on a fortuitous opportunity that saw him finish in an almost empty net. Tarek Elrich’s header back to his keeper was bound for the corner as Lopar did his best to keep the ball in. His effort saw him parry the ball into the path of Noone who snapped up yet another FFA Cup goal.
The visitors had their chance to equalise shortly after as Majewski found Yeboah with time and space inside the penalty area. Galloway’s late intervention put enough pressure on the forward to scuff his first touch as his shot flew over the bar.
City took advantage of the lifeline moments later as they found their second. Galloway’s first cross was cleared back into his path as he made no mistake with his second, finding Maclaren inside a deadly range to flick home the hosts second of the evening.
Both sides left the sheds on the front foot as the match opened up on both ends. First Metcalfe then Najjarine had half chances to add another while Maclaren forced another sharp stop from Lopar, all in the first 20 minutes of the second half.
City continued to dominate the Wanderers defence, finding gaps in-behind their back four. Noone again capitalised, this time latching onto Joshua Brillante's perfectly weighted first-time ball before curling his effort into the top corner with a wonderful finish.
Mombaerts' side continued to control proceedings, as Uruguayan duo Javier Cabrera and Adrian Luna made their home debuts as second-half inclusions, giving City fans a glimpse of their attacking attributes.
City will travel to Brisbane where they will take on Brisbane Strikers in the FFA Cup Semi Finals. Match details to be confirmed.