ABD Stadium has seen plenty of FFA Cup entertainment in the past two years, with another chapter added to the last week.
Hume City has played out some thrillers in the national stage of the tournament and become one of the teams to watch.
While the crowds have seen several miracles, there wasn’t to be another one in Hume City’s round of 32 clash with Bentleigh Greens.
But City didn’t go down without a fight.
After trailing 1-0 at half-time, it levelled the scores through Jayden Prasad.
Scores were level at the end of full-time, which sent the match went to extra time.
A Daniel Clark cross that hit the post in the first part of extra time was the closest either team went to scoring.
So the match went to penalties.
The previous two FFA Cup matches that had gone to penalties had been won by Hume and Bentleigh.
This time, Hume missed its first three penalties – and that proved to be the end of it cup run, with the Greens winning on penalties 4-1.
Acting coach Nick Hegarty said he couldn’t be more proud of the players.
While disappointed with the loss, he said it was different to the past two years when they had made the last 16.
“Most of the group hadn’t played on that stage before,” he said.
“It’s a really young playing group and to experience something like that is really good for the players coming through the ranks.
“It makes them less inexperienced and it only makes us a better team.”
Hegarty said the 1-1 scoreline at the end of regular time had been a fair result. He said the Greens had the better of the first half, while City had the better second half.
“There’s always been relatively close contests between the sides,” he said.
“We went down 1-0 and it was nothing to do with good play by Bentleigh … we made a lot of mistakes all over the park.
“We got one goal back but we couldn’t get a second one. We hit the post in extra time as both sides were pushing for chances.”
Hume didn’t have long to rest up, as it entered its round 25 NPL clash against Green Gully on Saturday night, losing 1-0.
Hegarty, who took over as acting coach last month, said everything the side is doing is focused on building for next year.
“When I took over, we talked about playing and training a certain way and having fun,” he said.
“We’ve got a few younger players in the squad that will get chances over the next couple of weeks.”
Hume, eighth with one round remaining, will play North Geelong Warriors on Friday night.