Memories. So many so far in our young club’s life. The first signing. The first game. The first A-League game. The first A-League goal. The first A-League win. And the first derby with Melbourne Victory.
Oh, that derby night.
It made you proud, didn’t it?
A night in which Western United made a clear statement of intent while the A-League watched on breathlessly as a five-goal thriller revealed itself at the aptly named Marvel Stadium in Melbourne.
From the lowest ebbs and huge highs to redemption and joy; 90+ minutes no-one in green and black will ever forget.
“The marvel at Marvel”. “The Green and Black comeback”. The media loved it as the derby story kicked off in heart-thumping fashion.
The scene was set.
Under the roof on sultry Melbourne Saturday night in round 4. In front of over 20,000 fans. United in their away kit for the first time.
One of this season’s most thrilling contests turned the key on the newest A-League rivalry, setting up Sunday’s return in “Derby 2” at Geelong’s GMHBA.
And like all good theatre, the narrative that night took fans on a rollercoaster. Victory supporters off their seats early before the game edged the way of the visitors.
As the teams walked onto a pristine surface, Victory’s anthemic “Stand by Me” walk-on made a powerful statement. Scarves up, they made it clear this was their home deck.
And after seven minutes, United was reeling under the overwhelming strike force of Toivonen and Kamsoba.
Two goals down to the Swede’s opening strike and Kiki Dobras 90 seconds later – it looked to be a long night for the away side. But the Green and Black have big characters.
Alessandro Diamanti pinged the ball past Lawrence Thomas to halve the lead before Berisha caused enough mayhem in the six-yard box to help a looping header from Josh Risdon skew off a Victory defender and in.
Suddenly, it was 2-2, after 28 minutes of mayhem.
And the madness continued. The effervescent Scott McDonald almost making it 3-2 before the break to end a thrilling first half.
He hit the post with a rasping drive as United’s felt the momentum shift.
However, his first A-League goal was to come minutes later, and suddenly the Green and Black did have the lead on 50 minutes.
It was 3-2. McDonald wriggling away from his marker after Kone’s intelligent cut-back, and his shot looped in. Cue mad celebrations in front of the Green and Black block of fans.
A nerve-wracking 40 minutes plus stoppage time left, though.
Holding on with gritty defending, the final whistle went and Green and Black heroes embraced; their fans celebrated long and loud.
For United fans who filled the away bays behind the dugout, that night’s folkloric grows by the day.
What will happen this Sunday? New memories in front of another big crowd.
Melbourne Victory, a club United respect, will surely not want to lose again to their new rivals from the West.
For United, another chance to make another long-lasting memory: a first home derby win against Victory.
It’s Derby Day in Melbourne. Pure passion.
Who wouldn’t want to be there?
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Western United’s next home game is against Melbourne Victory on Sunday, December 8 at GMHBA Stadium, Geelong. Kick-off is 4:00 pm.
CLICK HERE to get your 3-for-2 ticket deal. Enter WESTBEST1920
CLICK HERE to become a Western United member.