Magic run continues
Auckland City FC face their next challenge tomorrow morning in an attempt to yet again defy the odds and keep their magical run alive.
City stunned African champions ES Setif 1-0 to seal a FIFA Club World Cup semifinal showdown with San Lorenzo of Argentina in Marrakesh.
ES Setif were upstaged by the Navy Blues much to the delight of the Moroccan crowd, who were clearly behind the boys from Auckland every step of the way.
Defender and man-of-the-match John Irving decided the match with his great finish from the edge of the penalty area in the 52nd minute.
‘‘We played extremely well and created a lot of chances, and really the only thing missing was a sec- ond goal,’’ coach Ramon Tribulietx says.
‘‘I’m really proud of my players. To put in a performance like that against the winners of the African Champions League, after a really tough 120 minutes in our first game, is just unbelievable,’’ he says.
The win secured an additional US$1m in prize money for the club. The money is to be shared with NZ Football and the ASB Premiership participants, with City keeping half their earnings for themselves.
City will take on San Lorenzo tomorrow at 8.30am (NZ time)with the winner of that game more than likely meeting European heavyweights Real Madrid in the final.