FFA Cup QF preview: Bentleigh Greens v Adelaide City

A FFA Cup semi-final spot is on the line for two clubs who’ve stunned Australian football with their assured performances in the knockout competition.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014
Kingston Heath Soccer Complex, Cheltenham (VIC)
Kick-off:  7:30pm local (7:30pm AEDT)
Referee:  Lucien Laverdure
TV broadcast:  LIVE and exclusive on FOX SPORTS 3 and 3HD

Bentleigh Greens squad:  1.Christopher VAN CORLER (GK), 2.Thomas MATTHEWS, 3.James CUMMING, 4.Patrick AVICE, 5.Jack WEBSTER, 7.Jamie DE ABREU, 8.Wayne WALLACE (c), 9.Luke O’DEA, 10.David STIRTON, 11.Christopher DROUTSAS, 12.Luke GALLO, 13.Ryan LOSTY, 15.Christian CAVALLO, 16.Nick TEICHMAN, 19.Liam McCORMICK, 21.Alistair BRAY (GK), 22.Lewis FOSTER, 24.Luke PILKINGTON **two to be omitted**

Adelaide City squad:  1.Ryan VEITCH (GK), 2.Michael ACTON, 3.Alex SUNASKY, 4.Shane TOBIAS, 5.Matthew HALLIDAY (c), 6.Matthew MULLEN, 7.Joel ALLWRIGHT, 8.Paul BLEFARI, 9.Anthony COSTA, 10.Marco MITTIGA, 11.Nicholas BUCCO, 12.Alex RIDEOUT, 13.Vincent TALLADIRA, 14.Josh MORI, 15.Shannon DAY, 16.Thomas LOVE, 21.Jackson O’DONNELL (GK), 23.Nicholas BUDIN **two to be omitted**


Which of these final two remaining member federation clubs will move into the last four with only Hyundai A-League clubs remaining as opposition?

Adelaide United’s thrilling battles with Melbourne Victory has seen the rivalry between Victoria and South Australian football intensify in recent years and these two PS4 NPL clubs will add another chapter to it.

The clash sees two former NSL strikers go head-to-head as coaches with John Anastasiadis pitting his wits against Adelaide’s Damien Mori.

The big challenge for both of these sides has been keeping their match fitness up almost two months since the end of their respective seasons.

While the Greens have trained right through since their last 16 victory over Sydney Olympic, Mori gave City some time off training to recharge and refresh.

Which tactic pays off will be evident around on Wednesday night.

Bentleigh have been one of the surprise packets of the inaugural FFA Cup and have the benefit of home ground advantage for this one.

Wayne Wallace, who scored the winner in the opening round win over Parramatta, will again be a key figure for the Greens, while the likes of Luke Pilkington and Liam McCormick are also in good form.

The Greens will be without last round’s goal-scorer Ryan de Vries who is back in New Zealand while Andre McNamara misses out with an ankle problem.

It’s a blow with the home side needing to be at their best to topple Adelaide City, who have been the giant-killers of the competition so far.

City are the only NPL club to eliminate a A-League side – with their 1-0 win over Western Sydney Wanderers FC – as well as disposing of Brisbane Strikers in the last round.

Both of those wins came in Adelaide so this is the first time in the Cup City will have to get the job done on the road.

Working in their favour is they do have some exceptional talent which has lit up the tournament, none more so than teenager Thomas Love, who has gained interest from A-League clubs.

Striker Anthony Costa is another who has been a key figure for Adelaide, while skipper Matt Halliday and Nick Budin are other keys for the Zebras.

More than 100 Adelaide City fans are set to follow their side in what should be a cracking atmosphere at a sold-out Kingston Heath.

This is the magic of the Cup! And what a game this promises to be.