APIA Leichhardt advance to round of 16 after FFA Cup classic

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APIA Leichhardt are through to the FFA Cup round of 16 after defeating Tigers FC 3-0 in front of 1,952 fans at Seiffert Oval in Queanbeyan.

Chances were few and far between in the opening half, with a disallowed goal by Hassan Jalloh for a foul off the ball in the 44th minute the main chance.

It was APIA who were able to put early pressure on Cooma’s goal in the second half, having multiple shots from distance without truly challenging goalkeeper Jakob Cole.

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A lack of chances were instead replaced with tension as Tigers players Nikola Popovich and Christian Junna collected yellow cards for different poor challenges in the 65th and 73rd minute respectively.

That came back to bite Popovich, with the Tigers striker soon sent off in the 79th after an off-the-ball elbow collected Cooma’s Joshua Symons.

Down to 10 men, Tigers were nearly also a goal down after APIA striker Jason Romero almost found the top corner off a 19-yard free kick. Instead of rippling the net, it hit the crossbar.

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An injury to Corey Biczo brought APIA back to 10 men as well, with the Sydney side already using their allotted substitutes for the night.

APIA did however soon have the numerical advantage once again, with Juliano Borgna collecting his second yellow of the match in the third minute of stoppage time to take Tigers down to nine as it ended 0-0 after regulation time.

Two miraculous saves by Cole within 10 seconds in the 103rd minute kept Tigers in the match, and with a goal disallowed for handball they saw out the first half of extra time.

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After multiple chances to get the all important go ahead goal, the deadlock was finally broken in the 113th minute as Sean Symons slotted home a top-corner shot from inside the box to give APIA a 1-0 lead.

Cooma’s resistance could no longer hold as a second and third goal soon followed, with Jason Romero and Jack Armson scoring in the 116th and 120th minute respectively to seal a 3-0 win.

Whilst Tigers FC head home empty handed, APIA Leichhardt will now play at home against Western Sydney Wanderers this coming Tuesday with a spot in the FFA Cup quarter-finals up for grabs.

APIA Leichhardt 3

Tigers FC 0

Stadium: Seiffert Oval,Queanbeyan

Referee: Nathan Shakespear

Assistant Referees: Greg Taylor and Adam Powers

Fourth Official: Owen Goldrick

Tigers FC: Jakob COLE (GK), Christian JUNNA (Mark SHIELDS 91st), Lasse OLRIK, Jared TONINI (Ross COSTANZO 78th), Nathen MEGIC (C), Tony SPASESKI, Juliano BORGNA, Antoni TIMOTHEOU (Sam WHITHEAR 57th), Daniel BARAC (Tony MADAFFARI 75th), Nikola POPOVICH, Jay KELLY (Tomas KRKLEC 69th)

Unused Sub: Dean COWDROY (GK)

APIA LEICHHARDT: Luke TURNBULL (GK), Paul GALIMI (Nick AZZONE 69th), David D’APUZZO (Joshua SYMONS 23rd), Themba MUATA-MARLOW, Walter SCOTT, Jack ARMSON, Adrian UCCHINO (C), Franco PARISI (Sean SYMONS 69th), Jason ROMERO, Matthew CAHILL (Hassan JALLOH 38th), Tyan DIAZ (Corey BICZO 46th( Alex ZINNATO 91st minute)

Unused Sub: Gene MARANTOS (GK),

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William Makepeace
Current Intern covering Canberra United. Sports Media student at University of Canberra who lives and breathes Football

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