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The Roar


Ikonomidis winner sends Victory into A-League grand final

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18th May, 2024
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Melbourne Victory are into the A-League Men grand final after a semi-final win for the ages, with Chris Ikonomidis’ extra-time goal defying Wellington Phoenix.

Victory emerged triumphant from a titanic struggle at Sky Stadium on Saturday, where a best-ever Phoenix crowd of 33,297 willed the league minnows into a first grand final.

After Paul Izzo saved a dubiously-awarded second-half penalty, Tony Popovic’s side thought they were through courtesy of Adama Traore’s 82nd-minute thunderbolt.

Substitute Oskar Zawada instead sent the crowd into delirium with a 99th-minute equaliser, and Giancarlo Italiano’s side into extra time.

After a best-ever campaign marked by late drama, at that moment it felt impossible Wellington’s fairytale season would end in defeat.

Instead, Ikonomidis beat his marker at the back post to bundle home an extra-time corner, before Victory’s defence finished the job by holding out wave after wave of Nix attacks.

The prize for the Victory is the chance to win a fifth title next Saturday after stunning the Phoenix on the biggest night in the Kiwi club’s history.


They may even host the decider, should Sydney FC defeat Central Coast in the second semi-final to be completed on Saturday night.