SHOWDOWN: Crushing defeat seals Central’s finals fate
SOCCER: Heavy pressure placed upon rivals Central FC has well and truly paid off for Bluebirds United in their quest to take out the CQ Premiers League.
The two teams went head-to-head on Saturday evening at Webber Park in what would eventually become a landslide 7-nil defeat for Central during the league's preliminary finals.
Bluebirds coach Gary Skinner said his third-ranked side had entered into the game with plans to cripple the opposing midfield.
"We were trying to put our best foot in front early in the game, to try and get a couple of goals early so that we could take the sting out of them."
Bluebirds Midfielder Liam Mclean ensured the side got off to a flying start, staking claim to an early goal in the first half.
Both McLean and Yianni Kondilis - who also claimed a goal - were just some of the stars to deliver crucial defence, keeping a seasoned Central line-up at bay.
"We wanted to press them high up the park, we had three young mobile midfielders in the squad last night and we put them in there for a reason," Mr Skinner explained.
He said strategic measures also afforded the powerhouse side a chance to capitalise on Central's many forced errors consistently.
"What we were trying to do was stop them from getting service to their forward line and getting the ball forward to Garth Lawrie, he's one of the best players in the league."
"We had to try limit that service to him and we did that really well," he said.
A Bluebirds victory also appeared to be in the making early on into the first half - a four to nil scored a grim reminder for Central.
However, despite a win now more likely at halftime, Mr Skinner said only motivated his squad to play harder - and smarter.
"We did a really good job defensively, we defended from our front three and applied pressure to their back four whenever they tried to play out from the back," he said.
Despite being yellow carded, Blake Penfold managed to make known his presence - claiming three of the total seven goals scored.
"We were picking up mistakes and that was allowing us to win the ball higher up the park and apply pressure to them. We scored seven goals, so it definitely worked for us."
Samuel Skinner rounded out the scorecard, while Harry Black also delivered a stellar display in his replacement of Sean Jasperson.
Mr Skinner said the squad will now look to regroup in the lead up to next weekend's final against Frenchville.
"They're a fast, mobile team and we're going to have to be on our game. The boys have an opportunity to get their hands on the Wesley Hall Cup and we're going to give it our best shot."
The grand final will take place next Saturday at Ryan Park, Berserker from 7pm.