The 2019 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s premiership title is officially the Wollongong Wolves as the competition front runners wrapped up the league win during a massive weekend of Round 21 action.
After leading the competition from the opening week of the season, Wollongong finally wrapped up the historic win to end the club’s 32-year Premiership drought.
Wollongong’s win wasn’t the only big news from the weekend’s fixtures as Marconi, Blacktown City and APIA Leichhardt confirmed their place in this seasons finals series.
Only one finals place remains and it will be a three-team battle between Sydney United 58, Sydney Olympic and Mt Druitt Town Rangers for that last remaining place in the post season.
Marconi Stallions 2 – Blacktown City 0 at Marconi Stadium
Two late goals have helped Marconi Stallions snatch a 2-0 win against Blacktown Stallions at Marconi Stadium on Saturday.
The win has all but secured the Stallions their spot in the finals with a round still to play.
With the clock running down substitute Anthony Frangie found the back of the net in the 90th minute with a glancing header before Brandon Vella buried one home to send the home fans into raptures in the 94th minute.
Despite the loss Blacktown hold onto third spot.
Sydney FC 0 – Sutherland Sharks 4 at Lambert Park
Sutherland Sharks have snapped a three-game losing streak with an emphatic 4-0 win against Sydney FC at Lambert Park on Saturday.
It was a brilliant performance from the Sharks as Charles Lokolingoy and Jeremy Cox both scored a brace against their former side.
It was one-way traffic from the start as the visitors made the most of their attacking dominance to go into halftime 3-0 thanks to a Cox double and a 45th minute finish from Lokolingoy.
Sydney FC fought their way back into the contest after the interval but it wasn’t enough with Lokolingoy claiming his second and Sutherland’s fourth of the match.
A late flurry from the home side gave fans hope of a consolation goal yet it never eventuated as the Sharks held on for the 4-0 win.
Mt Druitt Town Rangers 4 – Hakoah Sydney City East 0 at Popondetta Park
Mount Druitt Town Rangers secured back-to-back victories in a 4-0 rout of Hakoah Sydney City East on a cold evening at Popondetta Park.
The result was Mount Druitt Town Rangers seventh victory of the season and keeps their slim finals hopes alive.
Alex Boyadjian and Toufic Alameddine scored in the first half hour to give the Rangers a lead 2-0 at the break.
Alameddine completed his brace in the second half alongside a Jacob Esposito goal to bank three more points in their maiden season in the NSW top flight.
For Hakoah Sydney City East, the visitors had their chances through Amauri Gauthier and Joshua Swadling but were wasteful in front of goal. The relegated side added a missed penalty in the second half as they look to next week to finish on a high.
Manly United 0 – APIA Leichhardt Tigers 1 at Cromer Park
APIA Leichhardt Tigers laboured their way to a tight 1-0 triumph over a spirited Manly United outfit at Cromer Park on Sunday afternoon.
Despite only bearing a solitary goal, the Northern Beaches crowd were treated to an entertaining affair where both sides retained position well and experienced periods of domination.
In the end, they were split by a second-half Chris Payne strike which brought up 20 goals for the former Manly striker this campaign.
The result all but sealed second spot for APIA, whilst striking one last dagger in the heart of Manly’s fading finals aspirations.
Sydney Olympic 2 – Sydney United 58 1 at Belmore Sports Ground
Sydney Olympic have kept their finals hopes are after a stunning 2-1 victory over Sydney United 58 at Belmore Sportsground on Sunday evening.
A goal to Tariq Maia in the 26th minute had Sydney United 58 with the advantage after the first stanza, but a 10-minute block early into the second half saw the pace of the game change drastically.
A goal to Olympic substitute Jack Stewart and a well-taken penalty from Olympic skipper Jason Madonis saw the home side work their way back into the game.
Despite a massive amount of pressure from the visitors, Olympic remained resolute in defence to hold on to the lead to take a hard-fought three points from the game.
It was a crucial three points for the reigning Premiers and Champions, but their finals football hopes will now depend on a loss from Sydney United 58 next weekend, as well as a win against Sydney FC.
Rockdale City Suns 1 – Wollongong Wolves 2 at Ilinden Sports Centre
Wollongong Wolves have been been crowned 2019 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s Premiers after wrapping up the title with a narrow 2-1 win against Rockdale City Suns at Ilinden Sports Centre on Sunday.
The win ended a 32-year Premiership drought for the club and was their first league honour since they took out the 2008 Championship.
Wollongong were determined to secure their place in history from the opening kickoff and took the lead only 17 minutes into proceedings thanks to a thunderous volley from defender Nick Littler.
Star striker Thomas James gave the visitors a 2-0 lead on the cusp of half-time leaving Rockdale all to do if they were to make a stunning upset.
The Suns attempted a gallant fight back when Jonathan Grozdanovski halved the deficit in the 63rd minute but it would prove too little too late as Wollongong clung on for victory and the Premiership.