Adelaide United win A-League Grand Final over Western Sydney Wanderers
Adelaide United downed the Western Sydney Wanderers 3-1 in the A-League Grand Final on Sunday to claim the club's first premiership.
United completed a fairytale rise from chumps to champs -- from winless and bottom of the table after eight rounds -- with Bruce Kamau and Isaias scoring first-half goals at Adelaide Oval.
The Wanderers' Scott Neville dragged his side back into the decider with a 58th minute goal before substitute Pablo Sanchez settled Adelaide's nerves with a 90th minute strike.
Before a crowd of 50,119 at Adelaide Oval, Kamau opened the scoring in the 22nd minute when he nipped inside a slumbering Wanderers defence and latched onto a Marcelo Carrusca cross.
Carrusca had cruised along the left flank and arrowed a speculative cross into the box -- Western Sydney defender Scott Jamieson appeared well placed to deal with the danger but inexplicably was flat-footed as Kamau darted ahead of him.
The Adelaide attacker angled a left-footer past Wanderers goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne from five metres out.
Kamau was also a central character to Adelaide's second goal when, charging towards goal, he was clipped and felled by trailing Wanderers captain Nikolai Topor-Stanley, who was yellow-carded for the foul.
United's Carrusca and Isaias stood over the free kick, which was taken by the latter in stunning style in the 34th minute.
The Spaniard hit the dead-ball perfectly: It climbed over the Wanderers' wall and then, slightly dipping, curled into the left-side netting -- again, Redmayne had no chance of making a save.
But from the comfort of 2-0, Adelaide's nerves jangled when Western Sydney's Neville revived the visitors with a classy first-time strike in the 58th minute.
After being played in by a Brendon Santalab back-heel, Neville blasted into the net from 10 metres with the outside of his right boot.
In a frenetic finale, both sides had chances before Adelaide's Sanchez found time and space in the box in the 90th minute and fired a powerful right-footer into the far-side netting to secure Adelaide's first grand final win in three attempts.
The Wanderers now have lost three Grand Finals in the past four seasons.