Fi­nals spot for Auck­land City

Central Leader - - SPORT - By JEREMY RUANE

Auck­land City have qual­i­fied for the Fifa Club World Cup Fi­nals af­ter a come-frombe­hind 2-1 vic­tory over Van­u­atu’s Am­i­cale FC at Ki­witea St on Sun­day.

The win means they have be­come the first club in the his­tory of the game to qual­ify for four suc­ces­sive Fifa Club World Cup Fi­nals. Their tri­umph also made his­tory in New Zealand foot­ball, as un­til now, no club has held the ASB Char­ity Cup, ASB Pre­mier­ship, ASB Na­tional Youth League and OFC Cham­pi­ons League crowns at the end of a sin­gle sea­son.

With the teams level at 1-all fol­low­ing last Satur­day’s first leg en­counter in Port Vila, Am­i­cale came into this match know­ing that they had to score at least one goal to have a chance of vic­tory. The per­fect op­por­tu­nity pre­sented it­self when Ivan Vicelich brought down Sanni Issa in­side the penalty area. City goal­keeper Ta­mati Wil­liams pro­duced a bril­liant save and tipped the spot-kick at­tempt wide. Am­i­cale man­aged to find the back of the net on the stroke of half­time when Kensi Tangis headed the ball home to put them in the driv­ing seat for the fi­nal 45 min­utes.

Am­i­cale hadn’t lost a game in this sea­son’s Cham­pi­ons League head­ing into this match, and they looked on course to re­tain that record un­til the 67th minute when Ryan de Vries tucked the ball into an empty net. With the game tied at 1-all the fi­nal 20 min­utes saw a stream of chances at both ends of the park, with both teams chas­ing a win­ning goal.

Three min­utes from time, City made the break­through, with David Browne team­ing up with de Vries to set up Emil­iano Tade, who thun­dered home a glo­ri­ous win­ner to the de­light of the City fans. City will travel to Morocco in De­cem­ber for the Fifa Club World Cup Fi­nals.

Goal scorer: Emil­iano Tade of Auck­land City FC has a shot at goal.

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