Western United end Wellington season, head to victory in semifinals



After Western United beat Wellington Phoenix 1-0 in their elimination final to seal the blockbuster A-League men’s semifinal against Melbourne Victory, John Alois praised Jamie Young’s goalkeeping masterclass, the best ever of Gordon Banks.

Alexander Prizovic’s tenth-minute thunderclap at AAMI Park on Saturday and a series of great young saves proved to be enough to reach United’s final four and confirm that Melbourne will host the grand finale this season.

The youngster’s best moment, in the 71st minute, was when coach Aloisy persuaded him to compare it to the most celebrated save of all time – a surprise stop by England goalkeeper Banks from Brazilian Pel’s header in the 1970 World Cup group match in Mexico.

When James McGary’s header made sure to equalize the score, the experienced goalkeeper cut himself off and threw the ball almost out of the net with one hand.

“It was like saving a Gordon Banks, wasn’t it?” Aloysi says.

“It simply came to our notice then. I wasn’t alive then, obviously, but I’ve seen it saved many times, when Pell had that header and Banks saved it.

“It was an incredible save. There was a clear reflection of him, and the strong hand around the post was impressive. “

A humble young moment plays down.

“It’s good the boss called it that,” he said.

“The best thing about being an athlete is, ‘Can you perform big plays and big moments?’

“For me, it’s the most satisfying thing, but if people want to compare it to goalkeeping royalty, that’s fine for me.”

Young also made a sensational dive to catch Reno Piscopo’s fierce strike with one hand in the sixth minute and denied him a free kick in the 77th minute.

“The two best players in the park are probably Jamie Young and Oli Cell, they were outstanding, both goalkeepers,” Aloisy said.

“I expect that from Jamie. I have known Jamie for a long time, I coached him in Brisbane so I knew Jamie would save and be able to save important. “

Aloisi’s United face-off victory at AAMI Park on Tuesday night and Saturday evening but could be without Renেনে Khrin, who assisted in the 74th minute due to a hamstring injury.

United have lost all three of their encounters with Wellington this season and have not lost since their first game in October 2019.

When Ben Garuccio’s cross fell to Prizovic, they scored and touched the Serbian striker, prop, then made a stunning strike in the top corner of a nearby post for the tenth goal of the season.

This marks the end of Wellington’s second season, which was originally spent outside New Zealand.

“Jamie Young was probably the best player in the park. It tells you a little bit about the game,” said coach Ufuk Tale.

“We created enough chances to get ourselves back in the game but in the end disappointed, we’re not going to continue.”

In the other semi-final, Melbourne City will play the winner of the match between Adelaide United and Central Coast.

© AAP

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