A-League week 27 round-up

Mark Nolan

The Elimination Finals are set as the A-League completed its season.

Friday April 11: Newcastle Jets 2 - Adelaide United 0

Joel Griffiths and Adam Taggart scored for Newcastle Jets but at the end of the weekend, even the defeat of Adelaide United was not enough to get the Jets into the finals. With Sydney FC's win on Sunday, Newcastle finished seventh with 36 points and a zero goal difference. Meanwhile, Adelaide were also the victim of Sydney's success on the last day of the regular season, finishing in sixth place and earning a date with Central Coast Mariners in the upcoming Elimination Final round. The Reds will play at Central Coast Stadium on Saturday April 19 with a chance to advance to play Brisbane Roar the following weekend.

Saturday April 12: Wellington Phoenix 1 - Melbourne Victory 4

Three first half goals, including one from Archie Thompson in the game's first minute, sent Melbourne Victory back up to fourth place in Wellington. The 4-1 win against the Phoenix was comprehensive and made easier by Shaun Timmins' second half sending off. James Troisi and Gui Finkler joined Thompson on the score sheet before the break and Mark Milligan added a 59th minute penalty before Jeremy Brockie finally pulled one back for the hosts in injury time. Wellington were confirmed out last weekend but the Victory needed all three points to earn a home date in the Elimination Finals. They'll host Sydney FC on Friday April 18 at the Etihad Stadium. Before hosting Sydney, Melbourne will host Guangzhou Evergrande at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday April 15 for Match Day 5 in Group G of the Champions League.

Saturday April 12: Melbourne Heart 2 - Western Sydney Wanderers 3

Harry Kewell retired on Saturday after the Wanderers came from behind to earn second place.

Saturday April 12: Brisbane Roar 0 - Central Coast Mariners 2

Two goals in five first half minutes were enough for Central Coast Mariners to take all three points at Brisbane Roar and secure third place in the A-League. With a goal difference significantly worse than Western Sydney Wanderers, something truly bizarre would have been necessary to give the Mariners a chance for second, despite finishing level on points with the Wanderers. Still, Nick Fitzgerald and Anthony Caceras scored before the half-hour to provide Central Coast with a home game in the Elimination Finals. Adelaide United will come to Central Coast Stadium on Saturday April 19 while Brisbane await the lowest advancing seed in the semifinal round. In the meantime, the Mariners are set to host FC Seoul on Wednesday April 16 on Match Day 5 in the Champions League's Group F. Central Coast are currently top of the group and can go a long way toward advancing back to the Round of 16 with a win, so Phil Moss will have to be very careful with his team selection midweek.

Sunday April 13: Sydney FC 2 - Perth Glory 1

In the very last game of the 2013/14 regular season, Sydney FC claimed all three points and fifth place when Richard Garcia scored an injury time winner at the Allianz Stadium. Terry Antonis scored in the first half for the Sky Blues but Rostyn Griffiths equalized in first half injury time. Sydney looked like they would finish sixth and have to play Central Coast Mariners in the Elimination Final round but Garcia's late winner pushed Sydney to fifth, providing a match at Melbourne Victory instead. That resumption of the old rivalry will take place on Friday April 18 at the Etihad Stadium in Melbourne and comes just three days after the Victory host Guangzhou Evergrande in a crucial Champions League match. Perth, who did avoid finishing at the bottom of the ladder, did land above Wellington Phoenix for eighth place in a complicated season.

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