Wellington Scoop
Network

Wellington Phoenix win FFA Cup quarter-final, with five covid absentees

News from Wellington Phoenix
The Wellington Phoenix, under-strength because of five covid absentees, continued their history-making run in the FFA Cup in Melbourne tonight by defeating reigning A-League champions Melbourne City 4-3 on penalties, after their quarter-final finished scoreless after 90 minutes and extra time.

Young goalkeeper Alex Paulsen was the hero in the shoot-out. In his second start for the Phoenix, the 19-year-old saved three of City’s seven spot kicks before midfielder Nicholas Pennington converted Wellington’s seventh penalty to send the Nix into the semi-finals for the first time.

Paulsen stepped up in the absence of injured vice-captain Oli Sail, who was one of seven squad members head coach Ufuk Talay was unable to call on. Full game report.

Two players have been in isolation in Sydney after testing positive to COVID-19 last week, while three others returned inconsistent rapid antigen tests in the 24 hours before the game and Oskar van Hattum didn’t make the trip to Melbourne because of a tight hamstring.

Earlier News from Wellington Phoenix
Three Wellington Phoenix players have returned inconsistent rapid antigen tests for COVID-19 and therefore are not being considered for tonight’s FFA Cup quarter-final against Melbourne City in Melbourne.

The trio will undergo PCR testing in Sydney, where they will be able to safely isolate, if required.

The club and A-Leagues protocols continue to be effective for screening and detecting the virus and ensuring immediate isolation.

Our primary concern is for the health, wellbeing and safety of all players and staff. All positive cases are adhering to relevant state government health directives, in close consultation with the A-Leagues.

Other news from Wellington Phoenix
The Wellington Phoenix’s round nine Isuzu UTE A-League men’s match against the Newcastle Jets has been moved from Wollongong to Sydney. This Saturday’s game is now scheduled to be played at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium ahead of a Liberty A-League women’s match between Sydney FC and Perth Glory. The men’s match will still kick-off at 7:05pm NZT.

The move has been made as the television broadcaster is facing staffing issues as a result of the Omicron outbreak in New South Wales.

News from Wellington Phoenix – 30 December
There are three positive covid cases in the Wellington Phoenix men’s camp in Australia.

As of this morning , two players and a staff member have tested positive and are isolating from the rest of the squad.

The remainder of the team still plans to travel to South Australia tomorrow for Saturday night’s seventh round Isuzu UTE A-League match against Adelaide United.

The club and A-Leagues protocols continue to be effective for screening and detecting the virus and ensuring immediate isolation.

Our primary concern is for the health, wellbeing and safety of all players and staff. All positive cases are adhering to relevant state government health directives, in close consultation with the A-Leagues.

RNZ reports that the team’s operations manager Shaun Gill said:

“As it stands the game against Adelaide is still on and we are preparing for that as normal..but obviously there will be more testing done before we depart and hopefully everyone is clear and it’s off to Adelaide.”

Gill said the positive tests haven’t come as a surprise and they have been prepared for it all along.

“Given the number of cases that are now across the league it wasn’t a case of if but rather when and thankfully the protocols we have in place…(we) have managed to isolate to three cases out of a group of 30 odd people.

Gill concedes those they have a few nervous days ahead.

“There is a degree of nervousness amongst the group – where does it go to from here? But at the end of the day we have a job to do. We are on the grass today preparing like everything is going ahead for the Adelaide game and that’s our key focus.”

The Phoenix have already had three A League games postponed due to Covid-19 – the latest being against Brisbane next Wednesday.

There is a chance the club’s FFA Cup quarter-final against Melbourne City will now be played next Wednesday instead.

Three players miss quarter-final

Earlier update from Wellington Phoenix
Football Australia has confirmed the Wellington Phoenix’s FFA Cup quarter-final against Melbourne City will now be played on Wednesday, January 5. The match was originally scheduled to take place on Wednesday, December 22, but was postponed as a result of a number of positive COVID-19 cases in the City camp.

The quarter-final will be played at Kingston Heath Soccer Complex in Melbourne, with kick-off at 7:30pm AEDT (9:30pm NZT). The game will be broadcast live on 10 Play in Australia and YouTube in New Zealand.

The Phoenix were due to play the Brisbane Roar on Wednesday in round eight of the Isuzu UTE A-League, but that match was postponed earlier this week.

4 comments:

  1. Jason Pine, 6. January 2022, 9:02

    Alex Paulsen, never cut your hair.

     
  2. FFA Cup, 6. January 2022, 9:10

    Alex Paulsen, take a bow. Three, yes, 𝗧𝗛𝗥𝗘𝗘 saves in the penalty shootout by the Wgtn Phoenix goalkeeper!

     
  3. Shane Harmon, 6. January 2022, 9:21

    IF Wgtn Phoenix makes FFA Cup Final, hold off on the date & play it in Wellington at the first opportunity. Full house guaranteed. Football Australia would double the gate v playing in Aust & a fitting reward for the Nix. Won’t happen, but in the current era all rules can be broken. [via twitter]

     
  4. Andy Foster, 6. January 2022, 11:41

    Fantastic result! For a nil-nil match, a really good end to end watch. Really gutsy performance, and a great response after the last few very tough weeks. Great keeping Alex Paulsen! COYN.
    And Shane – wouldn’t that be magic. Needs changing the FFA rules preventing a Phoenix home game – and Government moving – with all the existing sports team testing / isolation protocols – to make trans-Tasman sporting fixtures viable again. Seven days isolation is a huge barrier for most of our peak sports teams who play week in week out. Crippling for NZ venues too.

     

Write a comment: