NPL Finals Announced

The full finals fixtures can be found here, but we will give you a brief run down with our thoughts.

The first week of the finals is locked in with Sydney United hosting Marconi Stallions, 4pm at Sydney United Sports Centre and APIA hosting Blacktown City at 7pm at Lambert Park.

Now we head into a situation where the finals sequence will change depending on the winner of Sydney United and Marconi.

Should United win, it will be business as usual with Wollongong Wolves hosting the winner of APIA and Blacktown at 7.30, WIN Stadium on Wednesday 21st August and the loser of the APIA/Blacktown game hosting Sydney United at the same time.

The preliminary final will then be played on Saturday 24th with the grand final the week after at 6pm.

Should Marconi win, the Wollongong game will remain on the Wednesday night, but Marconi would then travel to APIA or Blacktown on Saturday 24th August.

The preliminary final would then be played on Wednesday 28th August with the grand final on the Saturday.

Now there’s a few obvious issues with the draw.

Firstly no matter what scenario there will be a finals game played at the same time, as Marconi play on the 21st and United play on the 28th in the cup.

Secondly, if Marconi win then it could force a team to play 3 games within a week. In a finals system with extra time and penalties, this is extremely taxing on the players.

The advantage no matter way you look at it is to the top 3 sides.

All to be able to host the grand final at Bankwest Stadium.

And whilst we’re at it, lets discuss the grand final kick off time.

6pm in our opinion is too early, with association games finishing after 4.30pm in a lot of leagues. And when you consider that the Wolves have a very good chance of making the grand final, it means a very quick dash up to Parramatta.

7pm is a much friendlier time to allow as many people as possible to attend, and with the game being on a Saturday night there’s no school the next day for kids.

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