FFA Cup: Bentleigh Greens outclass Broadmeadow 4-0 in round of 16

Victorian NPL club Bentleigh Greens proved too strong for a Broadmeadow side missing their two former A-League players, winning 4-0 in the FFA Cup round of 16 on Tuesday night at Magic Park.

STRIKE WEAPON: Greens striker Chris Lucas rises above Luke Virgili on Tuesday night. Picture: Sproule Sports Focus

STRIKE WEAPON: Greens striker Chris Lucas rises above Luke Virgili on Tuesday night. Picture: Sproule Sports Focus

Broadmeadow were already without suspended star Mitch Oxborrow and lost James Virgili to a hamstring injury after he failed to prove his fitness.

Chris Lucas scored a hat-trick for Bentleigh as the visitors, who defeated A-League club Wellington 1-0 in the round of 32, put aside a scoreless first-half to cruise to victory in front of a crowd of 1627.

Lucas scored in the 47th minute from a tight angle at close range after a header towards goal from a Tyson Holmes free kick.

Lucas was in again in the 52nd after a great turn and shot following a run and cross from Marco Jankovic down the left wing. 

Kale Bradbery was wide with Magic’s best chance in the 61st minute. Dino Fajkovic nodded on a long throw from Luke Virgili and Bradbery skilfully found space on the six-yard line to get off a left-foot shot but he pulled the one-on-one chance. 

Lucas scored from the spot in the 71st minute after Josh Piddington fouled Josh Meaker. 

Magic goalkeeper Paul Bitz made a diving save to deny Matthew Thurtell in the 75th minute but Holmes finished off a class through ball from substitute James Kelly in the 86th for 4-0.

Magic midfielder Justin Broadley hit the crossbar in injury time before Bitz made another class stop on the ensuing breakaway. 

It was Broadmeadow’s first appearance in the round of 16, after four round of 32 efforts, and came after a 4-1 win away over Canberra FC. James Virgili was injured early in that game and was not risked on Tuesday night. He hopes to return in Broadmeadow’s Northern NSW NPL semi-finals against Maitland starting on Sunday at Cooks Square Park.

Bentleigh dominated the first half in possession and chances before Magic were denied late by two great saves from Ryan Scott.

John Majurovski went closest in the 42nd minute with a left-foot shot on the turn that forced a full-stretch save from Scott to knock the ball around the post.

Bradbery tested Scott again in the 45th minute with a left-foot strike but he was up to the challenge at his near post.

Majurovski was wide with a free header in the 24th minute in Magic’s other genuine chance of the first half. The Greens otherwise held sway and had several shots blocked.

​In other round of 16 games on Tuesday night, Avondale beat Devonport 4-1, Sydney edged Cairns 2-1 and APIA Leichhardt shocked Melbourne Victory 3-2.

The Newcastle Jets take on Melbourne City at AAMI Park in their round of 16 clash on August 29.