Four Finals Series upsets that show anything is possible in 2019/20

They are being termed the ‘Invincibles’ but history tells us the Westfield W-League Finals Series is going to be a whole other ball game for Melbourne City.

Unbeaten across 12 regular seasons games (W11, 1D), City have stormed to the Premiership and set a new record for the widest margin atop the table after finishing 11 points clear of cross-town rivals Melbourne Victory.

But only on four occasions in the eleven full seasons of the Westfield W-League have the Premiers gone on to wrap up the Championship title as well.

With that in mind, it’s a perfect time to look back at some of the biggest upsets in the Westfield W-League Finals Series from seasons past.

ANALYSIS: How van Egmond helped Australia break down Vietnam for first leg advantage
DON'T MISS OUT: How to watch the Westfield W-League Semi Finals

Brisbane Roar 2 – 3 Sydney FC (19 January, 2013)

Sydney FC only snuck into the Finals Series in fourth place on the back of Nicola Bolger's 83rd minute winner in the final round against Western Sydney Wanderers, and they faced a tough assignment north of the border against Premiers Brisbane Roar in their Semi Final.

Just two weeks earlier the Roar’s staple of Westfield Matildas stars – including Katrina Gorry, Tameka Yallop, Elise Kellond-Knight and Clare Polkinghorne – had schooled the Sky Blues on their home patch in a 2-0 win.

It looked like a repeat was well on the cards when Emily Gielnik netted the Roar’s opening inside the opening quarter hour, but then Sydney flipped the script as Annalie Longo quickly levelled terms before a teenage Sam Kerr delivered goals either side of half-time for the Sky Blues.

Roar found consolation through Vedrana Popovic but it was too little too late as the Sydney booked their place in the Grand Final and then carried their momentum to a 3-1 win over the Victory in the decider.

SYDNEY FC: Road to the Westfield W-League Semi Final

Sydney FC 2013
In 2012/13 fourth-placed Sydney FC knocked out the Premiers on their way to the Champions title

Perth Glory 1 – 3 Canberra United (21 December, 2014)

Playing at home in front of a passionate crowd and after claiming the Premiership with a ten point margin, it was fair to say that the Glory were red-hot favourites in the 2014 Grand Final.

Canberra United were up-and-down throughout the season and had scraped into the decider following penalty shootout win over Victory in their Semi Final.

But despite a midday kick-off it was the visitors that were hot from the get-go as American forward Stephanie Ochs netted a first half opener.

The tide seemed to be turning when Glory captain Collette McCallum equalised shortly after the hour but then Westfield Matildas star Ashleigh Sykes struck twice in three minutes to secure United the title – her goals coming either side of a missed penalty from Glory’s Kate Gill.

MELBOURNE VICTORY: Road to the Westfield W-League Semi Final

Canberra United 2014
Canberra United upset Perth Glory on their home patch to win the 2014 Grand Final

Brisbane Roar 0 – 2 Melbourne City (11 February 2018)

Premiers Roar had the wood on City throughout the 2017/18 campaign – their league-leading defence conceded just 12 goals all season and twice held City scoreless in the regular season to take maximum points from their clashes.

However, fourth-placed City showed you can take nothing for granted as they upset the Roar on their home patch in Brisbane courtesy of a quick-fire second half blitz.

First Aivi Luik banged a left-footed strike into the top corner from outside the box on 66 minutes before Jessica Fishlock also delivered from distance six minutes later.

That was all she wrote in the Queensland capital as City saw out the result, before again doing the business on the road in the Grand Final with a 2-0 win over Sydney FC to secure a Championship three-peat.

MELBOURNE CITY: Road to the Westfield W-League Semi Final

Aivi Luik 2018
Aivi Luik's second half goal saw City knock the Roar out of the Finals Series in 2017/18.

Melbourne Victory 2 – 4 Perth Glory (AET) (10 February 2019 at AAMI Park)

In the final round of the season Victory wrapped up the Premiership over the Glory in Perth with a 2-1 win and were clear favourites to back it up in their Semi Final.

Victory made the best of starts when Christine Nairn netted in just the second minute but couldn’t capitalise further before half-time to give the Glory a sniff.

Then up stepped Sam Kerr and Rachel Hill to edge the Glory ahead in the second half before late drama pushed the contest to extra time through an injury time strike from Grace Maher.

However, the irrepressible Kerr was not done yet as she struck a goal in each half of extra time to secure her hat-trick and a memorable win for the Glory.

But the fleeting nature of Finals success would haunt the Perth club the following week as they succumbed to Sydney FC in the Grand Final.

Sam Kerr
A hat-trick from Sam Kerr saw the Glory eliminate the Premiers in 2018/19

WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERS: Road to the Westfield W-League Semi Final

Westfield W-League Semi Final Fixtures

Melbourne Victory v Sydney FC
Date: Saturday, 14 March 2020
Venue: Epping Stadium, Epping
Kick-off: 2:00pm (AEDT)
Broadcast: FOX Sports, ABC TV
Stream: ABC iview, Kayo Sports, MyFootball App

Melbourne City vs Western Sydney Wanderers
Date: Sunday, 15 March 2020
Venue: ABD Stadium, Broadmeadows                                      
Kick-off: 1:30pm (AEDT)
Broadcast: FOX Sports, ABC TV
Stream: ABC iview, Kayo Sports, MyFootball App