Moreland Zebras FC will host National Premier Leagues (NPL) Queensland side Magpies Crusaders FC in the FFA Cup Round of 16 this Wednesday night at CB Smith Reserve.
Both teams have had thrilling runs in this year’s FFA Cup and look to continue making history when they meet on Wednesday.
The home team Moreland Zebras have had a string of successes in football since their establishment in 1948. But this year, for the first time in the club’s 71 years of history, they reached the Round of 16 in the FFA Cup.
In the preliminary rounds, the National Premier Leagues Victoria 2 West team had a consistent run scoring nine goals and only conceding two. Their biggest challenge didn’t come until the Round of 32 when they faced local rival Bulleen Lions FC at David Barro Stadium.
It was an intense stand-off between the two teams with neither scoring in the first 90 minutes. But in extra time, both sides scored a goal each leaving the game to be decided by penalties.
In front of 1,356 spectators, Moreland Zebras came away with a close 3-2 victory after Jakob Williams secured the winning penalty.
The Victorian team have also proved to be successful in their league run as they currently sit in the second spot on the ladder, tied on 45 points with first placed St Albans Saints SC.
Magpies Crusaders are also making their first FFA Cup Round of 16 appearance after making history in the Round of 32.
The match against fellow Queensland team Coomera Colts was one for the books. The NPL Queensland side stole the lead early in the first half after Michael Lyall found the back of the net in the 39th minute.
The team extended their lead with a goal from Kyren Walters in the 75th minute while the Colts aimed to fight back with a late goal from Payden Pemberton. The late effort wasn’t enough, however, to stop the Magpies from proceeding to the next round.
The Mackay team have struggled at times in their league run this year, so they’ll no doubt be keen to give it all they’ve got when they travel to Victoria on Wednesday.
Fellow Queensland side Olympic FC will also play their Round of 16 match the same night when they host Hyundai A-League team Adelaide United.
Moreland Zebras FC v Magpies Crusaders FC
Wednesday, 21 August, 7:30pm
CB Smith Reserve
Words: Vivien Topalovic
Image: Alison Langevad/Magpies Crusaders