Australia Cup Match report: Western United 2-1 Victory

Melbourne Victory’s dreams of achieving back-to-back Australia Cup titles came to an end on Wednesday night after a 2-1 loss to Western United at AAMI Park.


The Round of 32 clash was played on Victory’s terms for majority of the evening, but a Jake Brimmer wonder strike was the only opportunity the defending champions could capitalise on as Western twice found the back of the net.

Paul Izzo and George Timotheou both started in their first competitive fixture for Victory, while Luis Nana, Kike Lopez and Tomi Juric also played their first competitive minutes after entering the match late.

After scoring in the friendly against Manchester United last month, Chris Ikonomidis started up front once again and troubled Western’s defence on multiple occasions in the opening stages.

An own goal opened Western’s account in the 24th minute, who held the 1-0 advantage through to the main break, despite conceding 10 shots to nil in the first half.

The second half exploded to life when reigning Johnny Warren medallist Jake Brimmer scored one of the finest goals in Cup history as his long-range strike seared into the top right corner.

The unbelievable finish adds to the 24-year-old’s rapidly growing list of memorable goals.

Unfortunately for the energetic Victory crowd, Western regained their lead shortly after in the 53rd minute when Lachie Wales finished a clean passage of play.

Brimmer was inches off producing another world-class goal moments later when his right-foot volley soared just above the crossbar as fans held their breath.

Nani’s 83rd minute substitution injected immediate energy into the match, as the Portugese star displayed his class and smarts in a potent cameo.

Playing across the front third, Nani created nerves for Western’s defence with dangerous passes into the area, and was involved in Victory’s final chance which led to a Roderick Miranda shot on target in the 95th minute.

Victory’s focus now turns to the league season, which kicks off on Saturday 8 October away to Sydney FC.

The squad will play pre-season matches in the coming months to prepare for an exciting campaign.

Player in focus

Who else but Jake Brimmer?

The attacking midfielder’s goal-scoring exploits continued in stunning fashion, leading fans to gasp in anticipation every time he touched the ball in the final half-hour.

He looks set for another big season.