Caledonians end Rovers Cup quest

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
Email Cameron Newbold
Rovers' Brad Bielecki and Caledonians' Lachy Howarth vie for possession.
Camera IconRovers' Brad Bielecki and Caledonians' Lachy Howarth vie for possession. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Caledonians have moved comfortably through to the second round of the FFA Cup after winning their opening round clash in the WA side of the draw over Albany Rovers on Sunday afternoon.

Three Albany teams participated in the knockout national competition and all began their campaigns when regional and masters played off at the weekend.

Caledonians eliminated Rovers after a convincing 3-0 win at the multipurpose field, while Polonia progressed directly to the second round after their opponent Busselton City FC forfeited.

Caledonians' Nicholas Fox and Rovers' Tom McKenzie contest the ball..
Camera IconCaledonians' Nicholas Fox and Rovers' Tom McKenzie contest the ball.. Credit: Albany Advertiser

One Albany club was always going to be knocked out straight away given the draw, but Caledonians put the pressure on Rovers in the first half when Jeremy Everett broke through the defence to net the opener, after his side had the majority of the chances in the first 20 minutes.

Rovers missed a golden opportunity to equalise late in the first half from a corner kick.

A well-taken corner went through the hands of Caledonians’ keeper Elliott Price, landing at the feet of a wall of players, but Rovers could not conjure a shot on goal from close range and the danger was eventually cleared.

Caledonians' Nathan Kay gets the ball clear of Rovers' Chris Bielecki.
Camera IconCaledonians' Nathan Kay gets the ball clear of Rovers' Chris Bielecki. Credit: Laurie Benson

Rovers then lost Daniel Lee to an arm injury as they went into half time trailing 1-0.

Caledonians continued to enjoy plenty of possession in the early stages of the second half and Fraser Grant delivered a curling ball that found the back of the net to double his side’s advantage.

Rovers had their chances going forward, but time and time again were broken down by Ben Grey, who was outstanding in the back half, while Nathan Kay was also resolute in defence.

Caledonians' Ryan Harper rises high.
Camera IconCaledonians' Ryan Harper rises high. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Turnovers kept haunting Rovers in their attempt to get back into the match as Caledonians pressured them on the counter.

A defensive error in the last 30 seconds ensured a 3-0 triumph to Caledonians as Grant finished with a double, sending his side to the second round.

Rohan Lortan never stopped running in the contest for Rovers, continually creating for his side while Chris Bielecki and Brad Chapman were also solid.

Caledonians' Fraser Grant and Ben Grey celebrate their second goal.
Camera IconCaledonians' Fraser Grant and Ben Grey celebrate their second goal. Credit: Albany Advertiser

Polonia and Caledonians now progress to round 2 on March 23 and 24, where amateur and metro teams enter.

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