2022 MEN’S PREMIERSHIP GRAND FINALS GUIDE

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The Men’s Premiership season has reached its climax with 12 teams ready to go head-to-head in six compelling grand-final matchups, proudly brought to you by the Villa D’Oro.

The stellar weekend of action kicks off under the lights of Ian McLennan Park on Friday night with the Peoplecare District League Youth Grade (6pm) and the Fraternity Club Illawarra Premier League Youth Grade (8pm).

On Saturday, the action will return to McLennan Park for the Second Grade deciders with District League kicking off at 2.30pm and Premier League starting at 4.30pm.

The weekend will conclude at the region’s showpiece venue, WIN Stadium, with the first-grade grand finals which will kick off at 12.30pm (District League) and 3pm (Premier League). Both matches will be live-streamed on the Football South Coast Match Centre Facebook page.

Tickets on Friday and Saturday are $5 while on Sunday they are $15.

Updates will be posted across the weekend on Twitter @FSC_Official.

HEAD OF MEN’S PREMIERSHIP MESSAGE

It’s been a very tough year and it’s extremely gratifying to head into this finals weekend with high expectations of a great showcase of the men’s game in our region.

Thank you to the people who worked so hard to get us to this point; every club volunteer, our Men’s Premiership Football Councillors, the FSC office staff, and indeed our FSC Board – all of whom have put in over and above to get us to this climax to the season.

Congratulations to those clubs and teams represented over this weekend. Playing in a grand final is something that you never forget and of course, winning a grand final is a memory that will always be cherished.

Thanks must go also to our sponsors who continue to support our game. Without you, we would not be able to maintain the quality of football in our leagues that will be on display this weekend.

And finally, thank you to our supporters. We hope you enjoy a memorable weekend of games, one where our players and referees are supported and respected for the effort and passion they bring to make the games the great spectacle they will be.

Bob Hennessey, Head of FSC Men’s Premiership Council

PEOPLECARE DISTRICT LEAGUE YOUTH GRADE

Thirroul Thunder v Univesity FC

@ Ian McLennan Park, Friday, 21 October, 6pm

League champions Thirroul Thunder dropped points just twice in 2022 finishing ahead of Helensburgh Thistle on average points. Stuart Forbes and Tyler Adams have been the main goal threats with 30 goals between them in the league and a goal each in their semi-final win over the Thistle.

Grant Overton will be the heartbeat in the midfield with eight goals to his name heading into the big dance. The Thunder have been solid at the other end of the pitch as well keeping clean sheets in 10 of their 18 matches.

The Students have momentum with them heading into this one with a six-game win streak. 3-0 wins against Kiama Quarriers and Berkeley Sports in the semi-finals set up a preliminary-final penalty win against Helensburgh Thistle.

Yahya Djomani-Ousmane bagged a late equaliser in that one and is one of the top scorers for University this year. The team also have a strong defensive record – conceding the fourth-least goals in the competition with goalkeeper Anshuman Raut important to this.

It was a tight 1-0 win for the Thunder when the sides met in June, and it may be something similar this time around in the big dance.

Preview by Tim Gibson, on Twitter @Timg123_

Team Lists

Thirroul Thunder: 1. Luke Netting, 2. Noah Biddulph, 3. Tommi Locastro, 4. Jonty Westbrook, 5. Carl Gallaher, 6. Jack Cotterill, 7. Euan Riedy, 8. Grant Overton, 9. Lucas Alan, 11. Tyler Adams, 12. Cooper Rouse, 13. Ted Kelly, 14. Macaulay Hampton, 15. Jason Donkin, 16. Jarred Inzinger

Coach: John Cropper

Manager: Allen Bond

University FC: 6. Jamieson Coraci, 22. Nathan Ciccia, 25. Yahya Djomani-Ousmane, 31. Anshuman Raut, 35. Ethan McKay, 36. Jay Hill, 38. Tom Holliday, 39. Riley Stafford, 40. Miki James-Hearne, 42. Max Kay, 43. Mitch Allen, 44. Tom Lloyd, 45. Dean Loosz, 46. Luke Peever, 47. Craig Standen, 48. Jack Begg, 49. Henry Dowling, 50. Tom Phillips, 53. Ayrton Roman, 62. Felix Wiaczek, 70. Aiden Nakamura-Bell

Coach: Adam Potts

Assistant Coach: Matt Dawson

Match officials

  • Referee: Hayden Michlmayr
  • Assistant Referee 1: Damien Delovski
  • Assistant Referee 2: Lachlan Davidson
  • 4th Official: John Ruscica

FRATERNITY CLUB ILLAWARRA PREMIER LEAGUE YOUTH GRADE

Coniston FC v Wollongong United

@ Ian McLennan Park, Friday, 21 October, 8pm

Coniston powered their way to the league championship winning 14 of their 17 games. A convincing 6-0 drubbing of their opponents today in the semi-finals sent the side straight through to the big dance.

Sami Benten scored a birthday four-goal haul in that match, so the attacker heads into the big one in fine form. Jackson Nolan has also been prolific upfront for the JJ Kelly Park club including a goal in the United smashing.

Wollongong United finished third in the regular season battling their way through to a spot in the grand final. A couple of high-scoring wins against rivals Cringila in between that Coniston battering have seen the side through.

Will Nattrass turned in a player of the match performance for United in the 2020 youth grade grand final in a 2-0 win against Wollongong Olympic. While Jayden Makowski is the headline act in the attack. The forward is United’s top scorer including picking up four in the first semi-final against Cringila and even getting a taste of first grade this year.

The encounters between these two have been otherwise close with a win either way in the regular season. Coniston got the better of their opponents in round 13 with a 4-2 win before United earned a 3-2 victory in round 29.

Preview by Tim Gibson, on Twitter @Timg123_

Team Lists

Coniston FC: 12. David Zufic, 41. Michael Brdar, 41. Ky Nunn, 42. Omar Aboelela, 43. Josiah Lewis-Dunkley, 44. Jackson Nolan, 45. Dane Mathews, 46. Innocent Rububi, 47. Ash Bradford, 48. Alex Cryssostomidis, 49. Ashton Vozza, 50. Kyle Ristevski, 51. Jesse Blackmore, 52. Alexander Milhajlovic, 53. Payton Skurtevski, 54. Sami Benten, 56. Nochlas Shalala, 73. Brodie Masters

Coach: Mile Milhajlovic

Assistant Coach: John Demasi

Manager: Nick Cryssotomidis

Wollongong United: 6. James Dejkovski, 6. Will Nattrass, 16. Panupong Paokhem, 18. Brent McCance, 20. Jayden Makowski (C), 21. Curtis Thomas, 28. Riley Simpson, 30. Corey Bishop, 31. Cameron Bogoevski, 34. Venus Mutaka, 35. Favian Zaparta, 43. Alex De Santis, 47. Jarrod Lasala, 52. Adam Vrtkovski, 53. Seth Green, 54. Nixon Nourie, 97. Andrew Sousa, 98. Jake Charlston

Coach: Steve Makowski

Manager: Jake Henderson

Match Officials

  • Referee: Ethan Zvargulis
  • Assistant Referee 1: Casey Flemming
  • Assistant Referee 2: Nathan Alterator
  • 4th Official: Stuart Bell

PEOPLECARE DISTRICT LEAGUE SECOND GRADE

Helensburgh Thistle v Unanderra Hearts

@ Ian McLennan Park, Saturday, 22 October, 2.30pm

Helensburgh Thistle strut into the grand final as undefeated league champions scoring 122 goals along the way. Helensburgh scored in double digits on four occasions this season and have only failed to score less than four one time.

An emphatic 8-1 victory over Unanderra Hearts in the semi-finals earned their place in the big dance. Ryan Grima and Caleb Browne have been prolific up front for the Thistle combining for just shy of 50 goals in the regular season.

The Hearts were third at the conclusion of the regular season scoring 80 goals after 19 games. Chris Murdzevski has led this superb attack with 27 goals in the league.

As important has been goalkeeper Kenji Sawada – the Japanese a significant part of Unanderra achieving the fourth-best defensive record in second grade. His goalkeeping for the side in their penalty victory over Thirroul in the preliminary final was instrumental to the Hearts’ chance at glory today.

The Thistle have had the better of the results so far winning the previous three encounters. Irrespective of a blowout in the semi-final, the Hearts have been the biggest challenge to  Helensburgh this season.

Preview by Tim Gibson, on Twitter @Timg123_

Team Lists

Helensburgh Thistle: 1. Connor Brown, 2. Ethan Lehn, 3. Dylan Croker, 4. Mitchel Fox, 5. Scott Mawbey, 6. Reggae Rowley, 7. Caleb Browne, 8. Jack Dipple, 9. Cody Cuthbertson, 10. Eamon Van Zyl, 11. Luke Miller, 12. Brady Tipping, 13. Ben Morgan, 14. Dale Edmunds, 15. Reece McAlpine, 16. Ryan Grima. 17. Fynn Rodgers, 18. David Au

Coach: Daniel Paine

Assistant Coach: Matt Baker

Assistant Coach: Matt Radnidge

Manager: Danny Blanche

Unanderra Hearts: TBC

Match Officials

  • Referee: Brendon Fotheringham
  • Assistant Referee 1: Stuart Bell
  • Assistant Referee 2: Demi Goodard
  • 4th Official: Hayden Michlmayr

FRATERNITY CLUB ILLAWARRA PREMIER LEAGUE SECOND GRADE

Bulli FC v Coniston FC

@ Ian McLennan Park, Saturday, 22 October, 4.30pm

Bulli earned the league championship finishing just above Wollongong United on average points. The side went straight through to the grand final after their 4-2 victory against Port Kembla in the semi-finals.

Sam Adnum picked up Bulli’s first goal in that one and has provided a goal threat throughout the year. Braedan Kludass has been a reliable presence between the sticks for Bulli over the past few years including winning the youth-grade grand final with Bulli at WIN Stadium four years ago.

Coniston finished fifth in the regular season, but go into today with a 10-game unbeaten run. The side took out Cringila Lions, Wollongong United and Port Kembla on their route to the grand final. Conor Pontarolo has been a constant threat for the side including burying a superb freekick to win their match against Wollongong United in the semi-finals.

Matthew Tschentsher also heads up the attack coming into the big dance in great form after scoring a brace in Coniston’s 4-2 preliminary-final win.

There has been no shortage of drama between Bulli and Coniston in their clashes this year. The league champions have prevailed 4-3 in two of three meetings. Before the teams shared the points in a 1-1 draw on the final day of the regular season.

Preview by Tim Gibson, on Twitter @Timg123_

Team Lists

Bulli FC: 1. Braeden Kludas, 2. Lachlan Bryce, 3. Alexander Baulch, 4. Mitch Lewis, 5. Mason Elphick, 6. Joshua Kis, 7. Flynn Martin, 8. Jack Donnelly, 9. Yik Tung Zhou, 10. Deakin Brownlee, 11. Samuel Adnum, 12. Jayden Cook, 13. Baxter Bowler, 14. Adam Redzic, 15. Calum Donnelly, 16. Fletcher Bowler, Joshua Hawke, 18. Nathan Mitreski

Coach: Rob Bemi

Coniston FC: 7. Adam Voloder, 9. Matthew Tschentscher, 12. David Zufic, 14. Gian Sacco, 15. Aleksandar Duckinoski, 20. Harrison Matias, 22. Travis Anderson, 24. Lachlan Toole, 25. Adam Karayuannis, 26. Nicholas Grozdanov, 28. Filip Angelkoski, 29. Connor Pontorole, 30. Daniel Poposki, 31. Brandon Oliveira, 33. Brandon Angelevski, 35. Daniel Stern, 39. Connor McLean, 55. Jonathan Niceski

Coach: Franc Pierro

Assistant Coach: Jam Naumovski

Assistant Coach: Lui Belsito

Manager: Sam Filippi

Match Officials

  • Referee: Caleb Blanch
  • Assistant Referee 1: Steve Bozic
  • Assistant Referee 2: Damien Dennelly
  • 4th Official: Ethan Zvargulis

PEOPLECARE DISTRICT LEAGUE SECOND GRADE

Helensburgh Thistle v Unanderra Hearts

@ WIN Stadium, Sunday, 23 October, 12.30pm and streamed live on the FSC Match Centre Facebook page

The Peoplecare District League grand final will see league champions Helensburgh Thistle face off with modern-day rivals Unanderra Hearts in a much-anticipated contest at WIN Stadium.

The Thistle have set the benchmark for the league all season, finishing undefeated in 21 matches – including a 2-0 win over the Unanderra in round 11 and an 8-3 smashing of the Hearts in the final round of the campaign.

Unanderra had an inconsistent run of form in 2022 but ultimately secured third position through goal difference following the final round. The side will go into this contest with an abundance of finals experience with their most recent grand final appearance in 2020 – where they went down to Oak Flats.

Helensburgh had to come from behind twice against the Hearts just two weeks ago in the major semi-final, with stand-out signing Charlie Jones netting the eventual winner during extra time to help his side qualify for the big dance with a 3-2 win.

The Hearts have found a bit of form and confidence throughout the finals series so far, downing both Shell Cove (3-1) in the qualifying final and University (3-1) in the preliminary. Their 3-2 loss to the Burgh just two weeks ago will be a positive sign for Rod Williams’ men heading into this one.

Helensburgh boast the league’s best attack and best defence. They’ve scored a whopping 93 goals in just 21 games and conceded only 17 in that time.

League-leading goal-scorer Kade Kinsella led the Burgh’s attack with 25 goals in 18 games alongside Liam Unicomb’s 15 goals. Head Coach Andrew Paine also has previous success in the District League grand final, winning it with Bellambi in 2019.

The Burgh have a host of quality options around the park as well. Brad Watts provides pace on the wing and Vaughan Patterson showcases experience from multiple top-division clubs in the midfield, lining up next to former Sutherland Sharks player Charlie Jones.

Unanderra head coach Williams reached 100 games with the club in the preliminary final and will be looking to celebrate with his first piece of silverware in game 101.

The Hearts also have a duo of goal-getters in Mark Picciolini and Scott Bridge up front.

Picciolini finished the regular campaign with 11 goals in 12 matches before adding a further four during the finals. As for Bridge, he was the hero for his side against University after scoring a brace in the preliminary final.

Christian Plakias captains the side from the midfield, striking up a partnership with former Albion Park White Eagles midfielder, Robbie Delbanco.

Following 722 days between grand finals, both sides will compete for the first premiership since 2020.

Preview by Nathan Turner, on Twitter @nathanturner23_

Team Lists

Helensburgh Thistle: 1. Jordan Paull (GK), 2. Rob Watson, 3. Jarrod Benham, 4. Ryan Hope, 5. Peter Turrall, 6. Vaughan Patterson (C), 7. Ben Watts, 8. Blake Hewson, 9. Kade Kinsella, 10. Charlie Jones, 11. Brad Watts, 12. Connor Brown (GK), 13. Joel Mucci, 14. Luke Van Zyl, 15. Ethan Lehn, 16. Caleb Browne, 17. Blake Currey, 18. Cody Cuthbertson, 19. Liam Unicomb,  20. Mitch Fox

Coach: Andrew Paine

Assistant Coach: Ray Kerridge

Assistant Coach: Dave Thomas

Manager: Peter Grima

Unanderra Hearts: 1. Kenji Sawada, 2. Peter Kyriakoudes, 3. Nathan Belsito, 4. Jason Goldsmith, 5. Luke Debrot, 6. Robbie Delbanco, 7. Christian Plakias, 8. Jonathan Liddle, 9. Scott Bridge, 10. Tatsuki Nagatsuka, 12. Valentino Merxhushi, 13. Mark Picciolini, 14. Lachlan Martin, 16. Aleksander Prentoski, 20. Blake Coad, 23. Brad Moriera

Coach: Rod Williams

Match Officials

  • Referee: Jay Walpole
  • Assistant Referee 1: Greg Reid
  • Assistant Referee 2: Reece Edwards
  • 4th Official: Peter Ilcevski

FRATERNITY CLUB ILLAWARRA PREMIER LEAGUE FIRST GRADE

Wollongong Olympic v Wollongong United

@ WIN Stadium, Sunday, 23 October, 3pm and streamed live on the FSC Match Centre Facebook page

A first-grade Wollongong derby grand final between Wollongong Olympic and Wollongong United at WIN Stadium is a mouthwatering prospect to finish the Men’s Premiership season

The two sides have been tough to separate throughout 2022. United finished above Olympic to lift the league championship; however, Olympic have come away with a victory each time the teams have faced off including a 1-0 win at PCYC in round 28 and 2-0 victory after extra time in the major semi-final.

Wollongong United have the chance to retain their title after lifting the trophy against Woonona a couple of years ago. They have represented the region at the national level in the Australia Cup this year as well as the aforementioned league championship locally.

Rookie coach Billy Tsvolos has galvanised the group who have proved they have the capacity to compete at the top. Captain Danny Lazarevski is at the heart of a defence that has conceded just 11 goals in the 2022 Illawarra Premier League.

The duo of Seiji Kawakami and James Stojanovski have provided control at the base of the midfield, while Mitsuo Yamada is a chance to return from injury in the decider to add some extra spark in the centre of the park.

Klime Sekutkoski and Mason Versi provide a threat from either flank in the attack. The squad is also sprinkled with several quality younger players who have come through the set-up at the Macedonia Park club such as fullback Bailey Barbarovski and attacker Kyah Jovanovski.

Wollongong Olympic’s 2022 squad is one enviable to most with talent and experience all over the team. Seasoned pros such as Justin Pasfield and Tynan Diaz offer the team, not just quality, but leadership as well. Shot stopper Pasfield is familiar with lifting silverware at WIN Stadium; the former A-League Men’s player won the NPL NSW premiership with the Wollongong Wolves in 2019.

Chris Price is another of the winning Wolves team has captained Olympic operating as both a fullback and in midfield this year. While Jake Trew has led the line with distinction in the second half of the season. The forward scored the decisive goal in his side’s encounter with United in round 28 and found the net in Olympic’s semi-final win against the league champions as well.

The last time Matt Bailey coached in a grand final at WIN Stadium was back in 2018 with Bulli. It’s a fond memory for the Bulli icon whose team defeated Wollongong United 2-1 with a last-minute winner four years ago.

Preview by Tim Gibson, on Twitter @Timg123_

Team Lists

Wollongong Olympic: 1. Justin Pasfield (C & GK), 3. Josh Alcorn, 4. Chris Price (C), 5. Jake Trew, 6. David Hartas, 7. Tynan Diaz, 8. Joey Lavalle, 9. Tory Musumeci, 10. Rick Goodchild, 11. Harry Callahan, 12. Brendan Low, 13. Mason Mavridis, 14. Liam Willie, 17. James O’Rourke, 18. Jason Pappas, 19. Sandy Lowcock, 20. Cris Fuentes (GK), 26. Mark Every

Coach: Matt Bailey

Manager: Michael Davey

Wollongong United: 1. Jacob Madden (GK), 2. Sean Thomas, 4. Rene Vescio, 5. Danny Lazerevski (C), 7. Josh Correia, 8. Kyah Jovanovski, 9. Thomas Darjani, 10. Dinko Terzic, 11. Mason Versi, 14. Jeremy Flanagan, 19. Ben Brooks, 25. Mitsuo Yamada, 25. Jaime Guierrez, 26. Seiji Kawakami, 27. Bailey Barbarovski, 29. Klime Sekutoski, 32. James Stojanovski, 61. Jake Charlston (GK)

Coach: Billy Tsovolos

Assistant Coach: Deni Raleski

Manager: David Watts

Match Officials

  • Referee: Bobby Mazevski
  • Assistant Referee 1: Caleb Blanch
  • Assistant Referee 2: Harrison Fisher
  • 4th Official: Nick Ryan

Guide produced by Dylan Arvela, Tim Gibson and Nathan Turner

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