Gold Coast United edge Melbourne Victory in knockout final

Gold Coast United have moved through to the second week of A-League finals with a narrow 1-0 win over Melbourne Victory tonight.
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Gold Coast United have moved through to the second week of A-League finals with a narrow 1-0 win over Melbourne Victory tonight.

The home side dominated long periods of the Skilled Park contest before central defender Dino Djulbic powered home a header in injury time to send his side to the next phase of action where they will meet Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium next weekend.

A-League – second elimination final
Gold Coast United: 1 (Dino Djulbic 90+1’)
Melbourne Victory: 0

Venue: Skilled Park, Robina
Crowd:approx. 4,000
Referee: Strebre Delovski
Yellow cards: GCU - Steve Pantelidis 84’
MV - Marvin Angulo 87’

The Victory were the brighter of the starters as Danny Allsopp saw his 6th minute shot sting the palms of Gold Coast keeper Glen Moss before Robbie Kruse tested the ex-Victory custodian around 20 minutes later.

After the first half, the home side became the antagonists and were looking far more dangerous with midfielder Peter Perchtold sending an inch-perfect cross to Joel Porter whose shot whistled off the top of the crossbar.

Miron Bleiberg’s side was enjoying the festivities and again came close when Zenon Caravella let rip in the 60th minute but Victory custodian Michael Petkovic was doing all he could to keep the visitors in the contest.

Shane Smeltz lashed wide in the 66th minute before Petkovic came up with a top save about ten minutes later when Bruce Djite found Smeltz but the Kiwi could not beat the Victory gloveman.

It was end-to-end stuff as Petkovic made a big save in the 83rd minute from a Tahj Minniecon shot and moments later Carlos Hernandez came off the bench for the visitors to shave the crossbar with his free-kick.

GOAL But the southerners were soon to be put back in their place when United centre-back Dino Djulbic was in the right place at the right time to head home Perchtold’s injury-time corner , giving his side the deserved win after they had enjoyed much more of the forward action for the entire contest.

Starting Line-Upd

GCU
Glen Moss (gk), Steve Pantelidis, Dino Djulbic, Michael Thwaite, Adama Traore (Porter 49’), Peter Perchtold, Zenon Caravella, Anderson, Tahj Minniecon (Rees 90+3’), Bruce Djite (Harold 81’), Shane Smeltz

Subs - Scott Higgins (gk), Joel Porter (49’), Chris Harold (81’), Kristian Rees (90+3’), Steve Fitzsimmons

MV
Michael Petkovic (gk), Petar Franjic, Adrian Leijer, Roddy Vargas, Surat Sukha (Celeski 34’), Diogo Ferreira (Hernandez 70’), Marvin Angulo, Tom Pondeljak, Mate Dugandzic (Thompson 53’), Danny Allsopp, Robbie Kruse

Subs - Sebastian Mattei (gk), Billy Celeski (34’), Archie Thompson (53’), Carlos Hernandez (70’), Matt Foschini

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