A look back at Victory’s first-week finals


As Melbourne Victory enters its 11th Hyundai A-League Finals Series, we look back at its previous matches in the opening week.

Victory will host the Wellington Phoenix in an Elimination Final at AAMI Park on Friday.

The four-time champions have a strong record in the first week of the Finals Series, losing just two of eight matches.

We look back at Victory’s previous first-week finals, including prior to the format being changed in 2012-13.

2006-07 Semi Final @ Coopers Stadium
Adelaide United 0
Melbourne Victory 0

Victory held the Reds in the first leg of a tie that would be settled in incredible fashion in Melbourne.

James Robinson’s famous 92nd-minute header in the return leg sent Victory into the Grand Final 2-1 on aggregate before it thrashed the Reds 6-0 in the decider.

2008-09 Semi Final @ Coopers Stadium
Adelaide United 0
Melbourne Victory 2
(Carlos Hernandez 13′, Danny Allsopp 89′)

Victory took control of its tie against Adelaide two years later away from home, Hernandez’s powerful strike cannoning in off the crossbar before Allsopp sealed the win.

A 4-0 win at home sent Victory into another Grand Final, where it again beat the Reds – this time 1-0.

2009-10 Semi Final @ Marvel Stadium
Melbourne Victory 2
(Nik Mrdja 16′, Carlos Hernandez 40′)
Sydney FC 1 (John Aloisi 43′)

Victory would edge past Sydney FC across two legs, but only just.

Nik Mrdja – later sent off – and Hernandez goals lifted Victory, which lost the Grand Final on penalties to the Sky Blues after a dramatic 2-2 second-leg draw in the semis.

2010-11 Semi Final @ Cbus Super Stadium
Gold Coast United 1
(Dino Djulbic 90+1′)
Melbourne Victory 0

Victory’s loss on the Gold Coast came to a late goal from Dino Djulbic, who headed in from a corner in additional time.

2012-13 Elimination Final @ Marvel Stadium
Melbourne Victory 2
(Mark Milligan 90+1′ pen, Archie Thompson 95′)
Perth Glory 1 (Ryo Nagai 15′)

Perth took the lead through Ryo Nagai, who chested in from close range in the first half, before Shane Smeltz blasted a penalty against the crossbar in the 88th minute.

Mark Milligan sent the clash to extra-time from the penalty spot after Andrew Nabbout was fouled in the area and Steve Pantelidis sent off for the visitor.

Archie Thompson and Marco Rojas combined for what proved to be the winner in the 95th minute.

2013-14 Elimination Final @ Marvel Stadium
Melbourne Victory 2
(Archie Thompson 19′, Gui Finkler 90+2′)
Sydney FC 1 (Sebastian Ryall 34′)

Thompson opened the scoring after a beautiful pass from James Troisi, only for Sebastian Ryall to bring Sydney level.

The winner came via Gui Finkler, who put away an Adama Traore cross in additional time.

2015-16 Elimination Final @ Suncorp Stadium
Brisbane Roar 2
(Matt McKay 88′, Thomas Broich 90+3′)
Melbourne Victory 1 (Besart Berisha 86′)

Besart Berisha’s goal had put Victory just minutes away from a Semi Final after Jason Geria’s red card.

However, Matt McKay equalised before Thomas Broich headed in a dramatic stoppage-time winner for Brisbane.

2017-18 Elimination Final @ AAMI Park
Melbourne Victory 2
(Leroy George 63′, Besart Berisha 89′)
Adelaide United 1 (Nikola Mileusnic 57′)

After Nikola Mileusnic’s goal, Victory responded through Leroy George, who headed in a cross from Kosta Barbarouses.

And Berisha struck the winner, his overhead kick from another Barbarouses cross sending Victory through and it went on to secure the Championship.