Melbourne’s two A-League clubs avoided potential FFA Cup major upsets by recording away wins on Tuesday, albeit in vastly contrasting fashion.
Melbourne Victory were rarely threatened as they cantered to a 6-0 victory over Balmain Tigers, however Melbourne City needed an injury-time winner from Aaron Mooy to scrape to a tense 2-1 comeback win over Edgeworth Eagles in Newcastle.
Part-timers Edgeworth threatened to record a massive upset when they took the lead through a Bren Hammel penalty midway through the first half, only for Mooy to quickly draw City level with a scintillating 30-metre free-kick. The sometime Socceroo then repeated the feat late on to get the ambitious City out of trouble via a 92-minute winner.
In Sydney, A-League champions Victory scored after just 11 minutes through a familiar source as Besart Berisha slotted home after a sharp interchange of passes with Jesse Makarounas. It took until four minutes from halftime before the Victory claimed their second thanks to Connor Pain’s close-range finish.
Victory nabbed two more soon after the break through Kosta Barbarouses and Daniel Georgievski, ending any hopes of an upset from the fourth-tier side much to the disappointment of a lively 4849 crowd at Leichhardt Oval.
Balmain, who hit the post in the first half with a Joel Cook header, were overrun in the latter stages and there were further goals for the Victory’s George Howard and Fahid Ben Khalfallah.
Sydney Olympic won through to the round of 16 for the second year in succession but needed an 83rd-minute winner to see off Canberra’s Gungahlin United amid freezing conditions in the nation’s capital.