Western United has enjoyed some incredible moments on the pitch in 2022, winning the Isuzu UTE A-League Men Championship and witnessing the rise of the inaugural Liberty A-League Women squad.
As we prepare to bid farewell to 2022, we look back at the Club’s best wins throughout the last calendar year.
May 28, 2022 – Melbourne City 0-2 Western United (Isuzu UTE A-League Grand Final)
Without doubt, Western United’s Isuzu UTE A-League Grand Final win will go down as the most memorable match of 2022.
John Aloisi’s men wasted no time in getting at Melbourne City, scoring the fastest ever Grand Final goal as Nuno Reis diverted Aleksandar Prijovic’s near post header into his own net barely two minutes in.
Prijovic was not to be denied a goal of his own as he pounced on a loose ball in the box just past the half hour mark, thrashing a shot into the roof of the net.
Despite Rostyn Griffiths hitting the crossbar early in the second half, Western United’s defence stood tall to hold onto the clean sheet and the win, confirming Western United as Champions for the first time.
May 21, 2022 – Melbourne Victory 1-4 Western United (Isuzu UTE A-League Semi-Final second leg)
Arguably even more impressive than that Grand Final win, Western United pulled off a remarkable comeback against Melbourne Victory in the Semi-Final just a week prior.
Prijovic found the net early with a clinical header but Jake Brimmer’s free-kick meant United needed two goals in the second half to advance.
The man for the big occasion, Prijovic scored again right after the break before teeing up Lachie Wales to put United ahead in the tie 12 minutes from time.
As time wound down and United continued to hold onto the win, Dylan Wenzel-Halls rolled the ball into an empty net and sparked wild scenes of celebration from the Western United end – scenes that would be repeated seven days later.
November 19, 2022 – Western United 1-0 Melbourne Victory (Liberty A-League Round 1)
One of many historic moments in 2022, Western United made its debut in the Liberty A-League at City Vista Pavilion and Sports Field against reigning Champions Melbourne Victory.
In front of a packed out crowd in the West, both sides created a couple of big chances in the first half but the score remained deadlocked heading into half-time.
American superstar Jessica McDonald ultimately wrote her name into Western United folklore, netting the Club’s first ever goal in the Liberty A-League before the side saw out the remainder of the game, clinching a famous win.
December 4, 2022 – Adelaide United 1-2 Western United (Liberty A-League Round 3)
A 4-1 win for Mark Torcaso’s side followed that result against Victory and brought the team into an away trip to face Adelaide United in its third game in the competition.
A semi-finalist last season, Adelaide made it difficult for the Green and Black in hot conditions and had the lead approaching the final minutes of the match.
But the culture and belief within United’s ranks ensured a comeback was always on the cards, and a point would have been a fantastic result as Sydney Cummings scored from range in the 91st minute.
United wasn’t finished there, though, as Emma Robers found the net with a searing volley deep into stoppage time to secure a remarkable victory and the third of four in a row for United.
November 13, 2022 – Wellington Phoenix 2-3 Western United (Isuzu UTE A-League Round 6)
Western United’s best win so far in the 2022/23 season came in dramatic circumstances against Wellington Phoenix.
After the home side went 2-0 up inside an hour, it looked like United would head into the FIFA World Cup break without a win, but Jacob Tratt’s first goal for the Club soon after gave the team a sniff.
From there, substitutions changed the game as Prijovic equalised in the 84th minute and Alessandro Diamanti provided the crowning moment, bending in an outstanding free-kick deep with the last kick of the game to wrap up a huge three points for the Green and Black.
Honourable Mention: August 27, 2022 – Goulburn Valley Suns 1-6 Western United NPL (NPL 2/3 Promotion Play-Off)
After a superb regular season campaign, a third-placed finish meant Western United was bound for a Promotion Play-Off against Goulburn Valley Suns, with the winner securing a place in NPL 2 for next year.
Luke Duzel got the ball rolling with a low driven shot from the edge of the area before Christian Theoharous doubled the advantage before half-time.
Noah Holmes scored twice and Noah Botic and Jake Najdovski found the net once each in a rampant second half as United put Goulburn to the sword, running out 6-1 winners and clinching promotion.