Macarthur FC survive going 1-0 down to triumph 5-2 away at Oakleigh Cannons to secure themselves a place in the 2022 Australia Cup final on Wednesday’s semifinal. The Bulls will embark on their first ever Australia Cup final and earn themselves a chance to win themselves their very first piece of silverware in their history after a swashbuckling performance at the John Edwards Reserve that ended Oakleigh’s fairy tale cup run.
Only days before the match, National Premier League New South Wales side Sydney United 58 stunned A-League Men giants Brisbane Roar 3-2 to become the first side outside the top-flight to qualify into the Australia Cup final, and Oakleigh – newly crowned champions of this year’s National Premier League Victoria – were seeking to follow in their footsteps as A-League Men side Macarthur paid the John Edwards Reserve a visit on Wednesday.
With former Persebaya Surabaya fan-favorite Aryn Williams marshaling the defense and former Melbourne City youngster Wade Dekker prowling the left wing, Oakleigh seemed to set themselves on course for a shock result after Joe Guest rifled home a long-ranged rocket in the 24th minute.
However, a quick-fire double whammy from Macarthur at the end of the first half tipped the scales back into Dwight Yorke’s men’s favor – former Chelsea loan army member Ulises Davila equalizing in the 44th minute before former Manchester City youngster Daniel Arzani gave the Bulls the lead in the fourth minute of stoppage time.
The second half was all Macarthur – the Bulls went 3-1 up in the 55th minute after Arzani dispatched a perfect penalty, before Jake Hollman put the tie beyond doubt three minutes afterwards as he made the scoreline 4-1 to Macarthur’s advantage. Davila completed his brace with a penalty of his own in the 64th minute to seal Macarthur’s spot in the final, rendering Dekker’s 85th minute goal a mere consolation for a heartbroken Oakleigh.
The emphatic 5-2 win meant that Macarthur would face Sydney United in a Western Sydney derby of some sorts in October 1st final, with the latter acting as the hosts. The venue for the final will be announced by Football Australia in the near future.
Although Oakleigh’s final dreams were ended in such cruel fashion, the upcoming final would present an opportunity for a fitting finale for a cup fairytale, with Sydney United seeking to end A-League Men’s dominance of the cup while Manchester United legend Yorke is seeking to win his first ever silverware in his first ever job as head coach with Macarthur.