Keilor Wolves are the first crew nation-wide to register a victory in the 2018 FFA Cup.
The Wolves had the spotlight on them on Saturday when they produced an impressive 4-0 qualifying round win over Pakenham United at IYU Recreation Reserve.
First-game Wolves coach Johnny Cvetanoski admitted his team had some nervous moments in the opening 10 minutes, but once those early jitters were out of the way, the Wolves turned in a totally dominant performance.
“It was a great win today – an awesome way to open the FFA Cup,” Cvetanoski said.
Keilor goalkeeper Rob Verdino was impassable.
“He saved us two or three times one-on-one,” Cvetanoski said.
The victory was largely about Keilor’s on-song attack.
With a swag of new signings coming on board in the summer, Cvetanoski only had about three weeks to work on game plans, but that did not hinder them as they banged on four goals, three of which came against a 10-man United.
“This was the first 90 minutes together, so it was great to have a win,” Cvetanoski said. “I said to the boys, ‘Go out there, enjoy yourselves and work as a team’.”
Nick Barisic, a new signing with higher league experience, patrolled the front line with aplomb. Barisic fired in a double, both from crafty moves inside the box.
“I think he was man of the match – he was the standout,” Cvetanoski said. “Even on the opposite team, they were like, ‘What a gun, he should be playing at a higher level’.”
Captain Deni Najdovski fired Keilor into the lead from the spot, a 1-0 advantage that would stand until half-time. Barisic’s goals came in the 55th and 80th minutes before Daniel Angeleski completed the rout for the Wolves.
The Wolves blooded 15-year-old Justin Angeleski, Daniel’s younger brother, and he certainly did not look out of place.
“I put him on in the 40th minute at central midfield and he was just unbelievable,” Cvetanoski said. “I reckon someone from another club is going to snap him up straight away.”
Cvetanoski has high hopes for Keilor this season.
“Everyone is hungry,” he said.
“The boys that I’ve chosen, everyone wants to win, everyone wants a premiership.”
Meanwhile, Sunshine George Cross and St Albans Saints will be on the road for their National Premier League Victoria 2 west season openers this weekend.
The Georgies will face Brunswick City at Dunstan Reserve, while the Saints will meet Whittlesea Ranges at Epping Stadium.
Both games will kick off at the traditional 3pm timeslot on Saturday.