Bulls beat Phoenix to reach Australia Cup semi final

Macarthur are just one game away from reaching their first ever grand final after beating Wellington Phoenix 2-0 in the Australia Cup quarter final on Wednesday night.

New coach Dwight Yorke continued his perfect start to the season with the Bulls, overseeing a commanding victory of the New Zealanders at Campbelltown Stadium.

A first half goal from Al Hassan Toure and a late strike from substitute Lachie Rose sealed the victory that sent the Bulls into the final four of the Cup and on course for their first ever trophy.

The Bulls dictated terms early in the match and could have gone ahead in the 15th minute from a Ulises Davila free-kick. The Phoenix defence failed to clear his set piece and Jonathan Aspropotamitis had a shot blocked before Toure pounced on the rebound, only for his shot to be cleared off the line.

The lively Toure continued to cause problems for the Wellington backline and came within centimetres of breaking the deadlock ten minute slater. The winger was put through on goal by Davila and chipped the oncoming Oliver Sail in the Phoenix goal, but his shot drift agonisingly wide of goal.

Before the end of the break, Toure eventually broke the deadlock. Set-up with a clever assist from striker Anthony Carter, Toure was given room to shoot inside the box and curled the ball into the pocket of the net to make it 1-0 three minutes before half-time.

Bulls goalkeeper Filip Kurto had little do in the first half but stood firm when called into action 12 minutes after the restart. Against Kosta Barbarouses from point blank range, Kurto made a superb reflex save to keep Macarthur’s lead in tact.

The Phoenix were lucky to have 11 men on the ground when Ben Waine kicked out at Macarthur’s Tomi Uskok in the 82nd minute.

The Bulls sealed the win two minutes before full time when substitute Lachlan Rose pounced on a wayward back pass from Wellington’s Tim Payne, slotting past Sail to make it 2-0 and book Macarthur’s spot in the semi-final.

Standing in the way of the Bulls and a first ever grand final is Victorian NPL club Oakleigh Cannons, who will host Macarthur in the semi-final.