FOR one side it meant the world – the other, nothing at all.
Yoogali FC might have claimed local bragging rights yesterday with a 1-0 win over bitter rivals Yoogali SC, but the jury is still out on what it means for the finals – if anything.
But one thing is certain – Frank Romeo’s late winner at Noe Santolin Oval ensured YFC will not have to travel for their elimination final against Leeton United, which will be held on Saturday night.
Coach Rocky Marando said YFC will go into that match – and any others that follow it – knowing full well they are capable of winning this year’s GDFA title.
“We’ve always thought we can win the competition,” he said.
“But we’re not going to get ahead of ourselves. We know this week will be a grand final in itself.
“In saying that, no matter what, YSC came with a quality team and we had a couple of players out too, so it was a great result.
“If they were full-strength it would have obviously been a lot harder, but we can only play against who comes on the field.
“From our perspective we wanted to defend well and hold them out, so that was very pleasing.
“We’re building a bit of momentum now going into the finals, where anyone can win on the day.”
On the other hand, for his counterpart – YSC coach Sante Donadel – the match was effectively meaningless.
Donadel made good on his promise to rest all players who were one yellow card away from suspension, which meant YSC went into the game without striker Dane Ballard, midfielder Derek McKechnie, stopper Grant Davidson and numerous others.
He said he held no concerns in doing so that YSC was toying with its form ahead of their Hanwood re-match, despite losing their second game in a row and just their third for the season.
“I’ve got no dramas with that,” said Donadel, who threw himself into the fray off the bench, such was the depleted nature of yesterday’s YSC squad.
“It meant nothing. At the end of the day there was a bigger picture.
“I spoke to the boys after the game and said we’ve had a good week, but it’s been a nothing week.
“Now we need everyone at training, switched on for the weekend.
“We played a decent game last week against Hanwood but we know we can play a lot better.
“I just want to get out there with a full squad of people I know will give me 150 per cent.
“That’s got to happen on Tuesday and Thursday at training as well, not just on Sunday.”
Romeo’s goal was one of few genuine chances in a match that bore closer resemblance to a reserve-grade game than a senior GDFA fixture.
But for YFC, who were without four key players in Aden Johnson, Jordan Lando, Aaron Sergi and Marando, it meant their two-month undefeated streak remained in tact.
Yoogali FC has already beaten Leeton twice this year – once in a 6-2 away drubbing and more recently in a hugely valuable 2-0 win at home that saw them put one foot in the finals.
“It’s always a bonus to play at home but if we lose, it’s our last game for the year,” Marando said.
“There was a bit more incentive to win (today) so we could play at home but really, we could have travelled, it wouldn’t have bothered us.”
Donadel said he was “pretty sure” Yoogali SC would have a full compliment of players available for selection for the Hanwood clash.
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