Hume City will be staying in the National Premier League top tier, even though it drew 1-1 with Pascoe Vale on Sunday.

Hume entered the final round one point clear of the relegation play-off spot and focused on getting the win to ensure its NPL spot.

After opening the scoring, Hume looked on track to take all three points.

But a controversial penalty in the 93rd minute saw Pascoe Vale level the scores.

With Hume not taking the full points, Green Gully had an opportunity to go above it by defeating Kingston City.

Fortunately for Hume, Kingston City won 3-0.

Hume finished the season in 11th.

Hume captain-coach Nick Hegarty said he was relieved.

“We are happy,” he said.  “We probably got what we finally deserved after the last two months.

“The pressure flows through the whole club. I’m happy for the players and the club members.”

Hegarty said that besides the penalty decision, the match was one his side should have won.

While happy to stay in the top grade, Hegarty said overall he wasn’t happy with how the season had panned out.

“I’m not content,” he said. “We’ve put together a squad now that can challenge the top teams … we want to keep this core group together.”

Hegarty, who has already been appointed as coach for next season, said he was headed into semi-retirement as a player.

Hegarty has been one of the NPL’s best players for a number of years, twice winning the National Premier League gold medal for the best player in the competition.

He won it most recently in 2016.

Hegarty said he was looking to just focus on coaching.

“My body isn’t what it used to be,” he said.

“I’m not able to do what the mind wants me to. It’s the right time to call it a day.

“I’ve had a reasonably good career – I’ve been playing professional football since I was 16.

“I want to make the most of the opportunity I’ve been given in coaching.”