Central Coast achieves heroic qualification against Solomon Warriors in OFC Champions League

Phillip Mango was one of the heroes of Central Coast’s qualification by saving two penalties in the penalty shootout – OFC Media

Central Coast and Solomon Warriors played two games at Lawson Tama Stadium to decide who would represent Solomon Islands in the final round of the OFC Champions League.

In the first match we had a very open game between two teams that had great chances to come out on top in the confrontation.

Still in the first half in the 36th minute John Alick hit a beautiful shot from long distance and covered the goalkeeper Phillip Mango opening the score for the Solomon Warriors. Central Coast got the equalizer in the 76th minute with Junior Fordney after a good exchange of passes leaving the number 9 facing the goal – without further changes in the score the decision was for the return match that took place this Saturday, 25th June.

Second Leg:

The second match began with a fatal blow for Central Coast, which saw Solomon Warriors open the scoring in the 2nd minute. After a cross from the right, Phillip Mango released the ball at the feet of Tigi Molea, who just pushed the ball in.

After having good chances to tie the match, Central Coast’s goal did not come until the 85th minute. After leaving two defenders behind, young defender Javin Wae played the ball back for Clifford Fafale to shoot and tie the match with only 5 minutes remaining.

With just 6 minutes left in extra time, Tigi Molea dribbled past the defender and found Alwin Hou in the box who pushed the ball in to put the Solomon Warriors back on top in the game.

In the 119th minute Alwin Hou was sent off for delaying the match. With an extra man and only one minute left in extra time, Central Coast went on the attack to get the equalizer, which again came in heroic fashion – this time in added time. Fred Bala crossed and again found Clifford Fafale who scored again and took the dispute to the penalty shootout.

Players celebrating the late goal – OFC Media

In the penalty shootout Central Coast scored all the goals while Phillip Mango took the penalties from John Alick and Matson Feni.

Central Coast now joins Auckland City (New Zealand), Hienghène (New Caledonia), Nikao Sokattak (Cook Islands), Venus (Tahiti), Rewa (Fiji) and Galaxy (Vanuatu) as the qualifiers for the next round.

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