It was a night full of action at AAMI Park as we qualified for the FFA Cup Final in style, defeating Melbourne Victory in the 21st edition of the Melbourne Derby. See the five things we learned.
It was a short turn-around and it seemed the City code had been unlocked by Perth Glory but the bounce back-ability of John van’t Schip’s side showed that last Friday night’s result was a one-off.
Our intensity from the first whistle set the tone for the rest of the match and scoring first was always going to be important in the Derby. Of course there will be sides in the league that will set up to counter our style of play but as we saw on Tuesday night, when our boys have the right mindset and intensity, we can break through anything an opposition will throw at us this season.
Three from three for Fernando
The cult figure that is Fernando Brandan is establishing himself as one of the best recruits in the league this season, scoring his third goal in three games and goals in consecutive Melbourne Derbies.
Brandan has had Jason Geria in his pocket for 180 minutes now and the Argentine’s chemistry with Bruno Fornaroli is gathering speed. The two look like they have been playing for years together and we are only four games into the season. We say we want more Nandos!!
The month of October has been all about Luke Brattan and the midfielder was on song once again on Tuesday night as he controlled the City engine room.
For a man that was in football oblivion 12 months ago, a solid pre-season and the taste of first team football has seen Brattan regain his thirst for the game, taking him back to the form that saw him take the A-League by storm. He has been lauded for his creativity in attack and tenacity in defence and we think that sounds awfully familiar to another City midfielder that had a lot less hair than him!
Ten days, two Derbies, two wins
We wouldn’t say we have the wood over Victory just yet but two Melbourne Derby wins in the space of ten days goes pretty close to it. This is the first time we have won consecutive Derbies and there is no doubt that the tide is turning in this city.
There’s two more of these clashes to go this season which means there are two more opportunities to get one over last night’s opposition. The key for us will be maintaining the passion and intensity for the remainder of the regular season matches to ensure we’re playing in the last weeks of the season.
Home final awaits
The FFA Cup Final on Wednesday 30 November awaits as we take on Sydney FC at AAMI Park. There is no doubt that home ground advantage will play a major role in our first cup final, with our impressive record at the ground over the past three seasons.
Sydney have performed well at AAMI Park against us and their perfect start to the season means we’re going to be up for a huge battle for the final. The countdown is on and we can’t wait for the chance to be 90 (or 120) minutes away from silverware!