Craigieburn City has sealed promotion with four rounds remaining in the FFV state league 5 north season.
It’s been a season like no other for Craigieburn – it’s currently on a 14-game winning streak and has lost just one match.
On Saturday, it defeated Uni Hill Eagles 8-0 to open up a 10-point gap on third-placed Bundoora United.
While Craigieburn expected to be a contender for the FFV state league 5 north title, even the die-hard club faithfuls didn’t foresee what the season would bring.
The team found its range early in the season, scoring seven goals in each of its first two games.
A loss in round three brought it back to ground but it’s been all roses since with Craigieburn winning every game.
While wins are pleasing, it’s the manner that Craigieburn has gone about it which has stood out. It has scored 105 goals for the season, an average of more than six goals a game, and on 11 occasions it’s scored at least seven goals.
Craigieburn coach Michael Loche was one who didn’t see that sort of form coming.
But he’s keen to capitalise on it and add a division title to this season’s achievements.
“So far, so good,” he said.
“[I] Didn’t think we would win 14 consecutive games. We’re not done yet, there’s still four games to go.”
Craigieburn has had a number of options up front, but opposition teams have struggled most to contain the side’s two strikers, Jordan Connerton (36 goals) and Taner Altanhan (22 goals).
Loche said Connerton, an English recruit, and Altanhan, the side’s skipper, had struck up a good relationship on and off the field.
“It’s hard to plan for both of them,” he said. “You can’t shut them both down.
“It’s like they’ve played together for years. Jordan has become an integral part of not just the senior team but the club.
“He could be playing at a higher level, but he has brought into what we’re doing and will be a massive part of us progressing through the leagues.”
Craigieburn’s defence has been just as strong, with the side conceding just 17 goals in 17 matches. Six of those goals came in the first three rounds.
Loche said goalkeeper Cameron Salik and defenders Paul Murphy, Sacid Cicek and Ahmad Bakri had been solid contributors all year.
In recent weeks, the side has been boosted by the arrival of Aaron Turner. Loche said Turner would get better the more games he played.
In other results, second-placed Plenty Valley Lions did it’s promotion hopes no harm with a 3-1 victory against third-placed Bundoora United.