By Tim Warren
Canberra FC 2 (Barac 21′, Own Goal 52′) def. Gungahlin United 1 (Griffiths 24′)
Canberra FC are the 2019 Charity Shield Champions after defeating Gungahlin United 2-1 at Deakin Stadium on Friday night in wet conditions.
With the scores level 1-1 at half-time, Canberra FC reclaimed the lead and ultimately the match winner through unfortunate own-goal from Badreldin Abbas in the 52nd minute, following pressure by Lucas Mauragis in the box.
Earlier, Canberra FC had the best opening chance of the game when a ball cut back to Mauragis was slashed over the bar from inside the box.
Moments later Jason Ugrinic volleyed a sharp chance from the edge of the area, which was wonderfully tipped over the crossbar by Gungahlin ‘keeper Josh Lagudah.
Gungahlin looked to take some control back of the game in the 17th minute when Josh Gaspari scuffed a long-range strike wide of the left-upright.
Canberra FC opened the scoring on the night in the 21st minute as Jason Ugrinic’s weighted pass caught out the United backline.
Without any hesitation Gungahlin responded to level the scores just minutes later.
On the stroke of half-time Barac could’ve put the home side back in front when he was one-one with the Gungahlin keeper, only to sky it over the goals.
Fortunately for the home side, they weren’t to rue their missed chances, as they were gifted an own-goal shortly after the break just as the rain began to fall around Deakin Stadium.
The visitors searched for the equaliser in the last 15 minutes, creating a host of chances however couldn’t find the back of the net to overcome the 2-1 deficit.
United had a late penalty shout in the 85th minute when Jack Green fell to ground in the box following contact from Daniel Subasic, but it was waved away by the referee
The visitors threw all their players forward during the last set-piece of the game, with even goalkeeper Lagudah venturing forward seeking a last minute equaliser, however the ball was cleared away and the full-time whistle was blown.
After claiming their first piece of silverware of the season, round one will see Canberra FC face off against Canberra Olympic at Deakin Stadium on Friday, April 5th in a rematch of last season’s Grand Final