NPL Men Semi-Final: Our season ends in the Brisbane Classico


Our season came to an end after a Brisbane Classico defeat at Imperial Corp Stadium.



Despite a late fightback, our Lions Men were defeated in a tense Brisbane Classico in the NPL Semi-Finals.

The hosts started on the front foot, forcing early saves from Luke Borean and crucial interventions from Josh Brindell-South. Brisbane City were rewarded for their early dominance, planting an audacious strike into the top left corner from thirty yards to break the deadlock inside fifteen minutes.

Ryo Ono drilled a powerful low strike whiskers wide of the bottom left corner before Matt Ridenton came up with our best chance of the game, cutting inside and curling a right-footed strike into the crossbar. Ryo Ono drilled another similar strike shy of the bottom left corner before the half-time whistle sounded.

Within five minutes of the restart, City doubled their lead, capitalising on a defensive error to slot home at the back post. We continued to attack with ambition but could not get the ball over the line as the clock ticked slowly towards defeat.

Fletcher McDonald almost scored the goal of the season, attempting a bicycle kick from the edge of the box that went narrowly wide. Borean was exposed off his line, forcing Jake Minett to throw his body in front of goal to make an incredible block across an open goal. 

Hope appeared lost until Andy Pengelly produced a lifeline. Pivoting on the edge of the box with his back to goal, Pengelly rifled a blistering strike into the bottom left corner with five minutes remaining.

We threw everything at them for the final ten minutes. Ivan Ozzi dragged a volley wide before an audacious attempt from Fletcher McDonald earned a corner. Joe Duckworth almost equalised in the ninety-fifth minute, controlling the ball on his chest outside the box before dropping his marker with a heavy left-footed touch. He unleashed a right-footed strike on goal, forcing a crucial save to deny us an equaliser.

While our season ultimately ended trophyless, we will come back stronger in 2024.


85’ | Andy Pengelly




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