Pascoe Vale clinch 4th FOZ Cup as Balwyn go down fighting
The Futsal Oz Cup final. The biggest event on the Futsal calendar was ready to kick off both sides fancied their chances at taking out the cup and the $3000 prize money. A big crowd was in attendance for the final as Pascoe Vale got us under way. Early on a smart free kick from the lions saw Brenno Polatti test Frano Saric early on. A mistake from Dianoosh Rasoulzadeh almost cost the lions dearly as in form Robert Zadworny tried a clever chip which wasn’t well converted and just missed. A patient passing move from the bullets set up a golden chance as Ivan Zilic forced Rasoulzadeh into a fine save just 4 minutes in. A Balwyn corner fell to the mercurial Zilic who’s turn and shoot was smartly parried away by Rasoulzadeh. Zadworny tried a little too much in the bullets defence as he was dispossessed by Andre Caro who tried to be just a little too cute as he found Frano Saric off his line but unfortunately put it over. An unreal toe poke from Zadworny forced Rasoulzadeh into another brilliant save. Balwyn were dominant early on hardly giving their much maligned opposition a sniff and their young talisman Zadworny had a golden chance from a free kick on the edge of the D which he unfortunately put wide. Pascoe Vale tried to take it up to the bullets as Da Silva forced Frano Saric into another big save to keep the scores locked at 0-0. A touch of class from Ernie Simsek helped him hit the crossbar with a brilliant effort and on the counter attack Zadworny rattled the upright with a thunderous strike. Before Balwyn could catch their breath a well-timed through ball from Caro sent Simsek through to chip his side into the lead. Balwyn would have to feel they were hard done by going 1 down after dominating the play. It was to be their main man the man they look too for inspiration Ivan Zilic who went on the brilliant run through the middle of the court and teed up Ben Bodo to level proceedings. Balwyn were beginning to get on top of their more experienced opposition playing an awesome passing game which their opposition was mainly known for. All the lions could do was play on the counter and Da Silva put a good chance wide which he would be expected to bury. Zilic was being closely monitored by the lion’s burley defender Adam Husseni. Da Silva received the ball at half court and forced Frano into another miraculous save as this final was quickly becoming a night for the keepers. Unbelievably Husseni controlled the ball and put in a neat touch for the overlapping Da Silva who elegantly finished past Frano and gave Pascoe Vale the lead for the second time in the game. Husseni had a well taken free kick saved by Frano, before some good work from Caro down the left was pushed just wide prior to the half time break. Pascoe Vale seamed to wrestle the momentum back into their favour and would not have been looking forward to half time as they lead 2-1 going into half time.
Pascoe Vales momentum carried into the second half and Da Silva was at the heart of every attack going the black and whites way as his strike bobbled wide. Polatti managed to force his way through the bullets defense but was denied once again by Frano. Zadworny had a half chance denied by Rasoulzadeh before Blackburn pushed his shot just wide after some brilliant work down the right flank. Smart play from Zilic could have been the equalizer if not for the amazing performance of Rasoulzadeh. Zadworny somehow dribbled his way through the lions defense and got a snapshot away which was expertly saved by Rasoulzadeh who had been best on ground by a country mile. Balwyn were peppering the lion’s goal but getting no reward for all their chances & hard work. Mark Burton’s free kick was ridiculously saved by Frano before Polatti hit one over. Da Silva won the ball back from Zadworny deep in defense which was once again saved by Frano. A neat little flick from Zilic set up Tony Saric who had a huge slice of luck when Da Silva’s clearance deflected off his leg past Rasoulzadeh with venom and leveled proceedings on the night. Great work from Burton down the right had his shot saved by Frano before it was blasted over by Simsek. Caro had a venomous strike saved by Frano as the lions began to go for the win. A lightning counter attack from Zilic played in Zadworny who missed a difficulty opportunity at the back post which could have given the bullets the lead. Zadworny won the ball back from Caro and had a tough chance saved by Rasoulzadeh and he also saved the follow up attempt by Zilic. A passing move was almost the answer for the lions as Simsek had a venomous strike saved by Frano not for the first time tonight. Zilic cut one back for Zadworny who hit the open goal but it was miraculously saved by Rasoulzadeh in the dyeing seconds before Bodo blasted one over. Caro had a huge chance early on but was again denied by Frano. A long ball controlled by James Balckburn fell to Polatti who had his shot cleared off the line by Ben Bodo who once again saved the day for the bullets. A late chance from Caro was put wide and with that the game was put into extra time. For the neutral Balwyn were the better side and if not for the brilliance of Dianoosh Rasoulzadeh they may have lost by 4 or 5 in regular time.
So it would be 5 minutes each way and if that didn’t split the deadlock it would be decided on penalties. Extra time under way and Caro played a smart ball for Da Silva who didn’t commit to the back post as the ball trickled out. Frano Saric continued his fine form as he denied Caro again. Zilic tried to force the issue having another effort denied by Rasoulzadeh, Before Polatti opened up the field to put Caro in 1 on 1 with Frano but he strangely played the return pass to Polatti who not expecting it put it wide. Frano Saric was quickly becoming a household name as he denied Blackburn once again. Tony Saric had another good effort saved by Rasoulzadeh as the first half on extra time drew to a close as Tony Saric’s through ball found Zadworny who was again denied by Rasoulzadeh. Half Time in extra time and we were just one half away from the very first penalty shoot-out in Futsal Oz Cup history. Ernie Simsek had a huge chance to put his side in front but he was denied and the lions were hit swiftly on the counter attack when Zilic found Zadworny who missed another golden chance to win it. A game being played at lightning pace any small error could cost either side dearly. An amazing ball from Burton found the silky feet of Simsek who was once again thwarted by Frano. With the crowd on the edge of their seat a 5th foul penalty was controversially conceded by Ernie Simsek and Tony Saric had a chance to become a Balwyn legend and win them their very first piece of silverware from the penalty spot, Tony Saric was denied by Rasoulzadeh and justice was served. Dyeing moments Burton had a run saved by Frano before Simsek had a shot blocked by the Balwyn defense and Husseni put one wide as the bullets tried desperately to hold on. Burton put a late late chance wide as a flurry of late pressure came of nothing for Pascoe Vale and we would be going to penalties for the first time in the history of the competition.
First up stepped Dianoosh Rasoulzadeh who converted easily to make it 1-0. Tony Saric stepped up for Balwyn and he smashed it past Rasoulzadeh for 1-1. 3 time golden boot winner Joao Da Silva held his nerve to make it 2-1. Captain courageous Tony Imeri converted his penalty with ease to make it 2-2. Simsek was next up for the lions and he made no mistake as he made it the 5th straight penalty converted. Next up for Balwyn was Robert Zadworny made it 3-3. Blackburn made no mistake for the lions and he made it 4-3 in the shootout. In form Ben Bodo sadly had his penalty saved by the mercurial Rasoulzadeh. So it was all up to Mark Burton to bring home the gold and he made no mistake from the spot as he sent the crowd into raptures as they had just witnessed history in the making as Pascoe Vale took out their 4th Futsal Oz Cup in dramatic fashion. Congratulations to Pascoe Vale and Commiserations to Balwyn. The 2012 season sure looks to be bigger and better so get down and support all 12 teams in this remarkable competition.
Player Match Ratings:
1. F.Saric (GK) – 9
8. T.Imeri – 5
9. B.Bodo – 8
10. R.Zadworny – 6
11. T.Saric – 9
12 M.Saric – 5
18 I.Zilic – 8
Pascoe Vale FC
1. D.Rasoulzadeh – 9.5
2. A.Husseni – 6
4. E.Simsek – 7
5. M.Burton – 8
6. J.Blackburn – 5
7. V.Mazurskiy – 3
8. B.Polatti – 6.5
9. J.Da Silva – 7
10. A.Caro – 8
21. C.Bicer – 1
NEXT WEEKS CLASHES 16/05/12
- 6:30pm – FC Collingwood vs FC Essendon
- 7:20pm – Albert Park FC vs Pascoe Vale FC
- 8:10pm – Ashburton FC vs North Melbourne FC
- 9:00pm – FC Balwyn vs Hume FC
- 9:50pm – CF Brunswick vs FC Prahran
- 10:40pm – Elsternwick FC vs Metropolitan FC