One of the most enticing clashes of the FFA Cup Round of 16 pits a giant of Australian football against one the A-League’s most well-backed clubs.
Marconi Stallions from NSW’s National Premier League competition do battle against Melbourne City from 7.30pm AEST on Wednesday 21 August, with a place in the final eight up for grabs.
Follow the action in our LIVE stream and blog below.
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Marconi are a household name in the Australian football scene, having claimed four Australian National Soccer League champions an incredible four times (1979, 1988, 1989, 1992—93).
Their list of graduates that ended up representing Australia is nearly as extensive as their trophy collection — names like Mark Schwarzer, Frank Farina and Paul Okon are just the tip of the iceberg.
But the historic team from western Sydney are only just re-emerging onto the national scene, having fallen into the NPL’s second-division in 2015.
Under the tutelage of former NSL stalwart and Australian U-23 international Peter Tsekenis, they returned to the top tier of the NPL in 2018, and broke a long trophy drought by winning the Waratah Cup last month.
Their remarkable resurgence continued with a 3-0 win over South Hobart in the FFA Cup Round of 32, their first victory in three attempts at this stage of the competition.
They’ll be hoping to reach even loftier heights with victory over City tonight.
Their A-League opponents have experience at the pointy end of this competition, with victory in the 2016 edition their only silverware to date.
City beat NPL Champions Campbelltown City 3-1 in the Round of 32, with a brace to Jamie Maclaren and a memorable strike from fresh face Craig Noone.
City’s new French head coach Erick Mombaerts has the team playing an impressively free-flowing style in attack, but there have been some teething inconsistencies in defence in their early appearances.
“Our players want to win a trophy, for me, [the FFA Cup] is an important competition. We will go to Marconi with the strongest available XI,” Mombaerts said.
“I’m very happy with the players attitudes, their performances so far and also surprised with their understanding. We need to be more comfortable under pressure, with and without the ball. To recognise different situations and quickly react to those.”
Stream begins at 7.25pm AEST.
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