Fairytale story stays alive for the Wanderers as they chase their first title.
Japanese star Shinji Ono produced an exquisite goal on Friday to propel Western Sydney Wanderers into the A-League final in their debut season.
Ono’s dipping chip into the top right corner clinched the Wanderers a 2-0 win to dump two-time defending champions Brisbane Roar out of the championship title race.
Tony Popovic’s Wanderers are now one win away from being crowned champions, having already created Australian sporting history by securing the first-past-the-post Premiers’ Plate to become the first expansion club to win silverware in their inaugural year.
Western Sydney, roared on by their passionate 19,369 home crowd, will face the winner of Sunday’s second semi-final between Central Coast Mariners and Melbourne Victory in next week’s season decider in Sydney.
Croatian striker Dino Kresinger set the ball rolling with an audacious back-heeled goal to give the Wanderers the lead in the 16th minute.
But Ono, 33, who played for Japan 56 times and appeared in three FIFA World Cups, crowned Western Sydney’s triumph with his magnificent goal in the 71st minute, which gave the home side a two-goal buffer in the fiercely-fought semi-final at Parramatta Stadium.
The Wanderers head into the April 21 final on the back of a 13-game unbeaten run and denying the Roar a shot at their third straight championship.
It was also the Wanderers’ fourth win over Brisbane this season and the Roar yet again found it difficult to break down Western Sydney’s defence.
But the newcomers will be without Youssouf Hersi in the decider after the Dutch midfielder was sent off in the 78th minute for a second yellow card.
Check out Shinji Ono’s special goal below: