Jets into Grand Final as McGree's insane scorpion kick sparks City downfall
Newcastle Jets sensationally booked a Grand Final berth with a come-from-behind 2-1 win over Melbourne City that was lit up by Riley McGree's world-class scorpion kick.
McGree cancelled out City's early opener in the most incredible style possible before local lad Jason Hoffman completed the comeback in the 75th minute to delight a boisterous crowd at McDonald Jones Stadium.
Both goals came in the space of 18 second-half minutes and mean the Jets are through to their first Grand Final since being crowned champions in 2008.
The club's first Finals Series appearance in eight years had hinted at heartbreak when Bruno Fornaroli forced the opener in off Nikolai Topor-Stanley in the 15th minute, but McGree's stroke of genius enabled Hoffman to send the home fans into ecstasy.
They will now meet either Sydney FC or Melbourne Victory in the decider, and will earn hosting rights if the latter spring an upset at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night.
STORY OF THE GAME
- CHANCE: Golden early opportunity goes begging as an unmarked Jason Hoffman somehow heads over the bar from Dimitri Petratos' perfect free-kick.
- GOAL! City break the deadlock against the run of play as Fornaroli bundles in an effort that ricochets off Topor-Stanley.
- SHOT: Riley McGree unleashes a swerving left-footed half-volley that fizzes just over the bar.
- INJURY: Jack Duncan limps off with a quad problem after less than half an hour, Glen Moss his replacement.
- WOODWORK: On the stroke of half-time, Petratos' dipping free-kick from distance grazes the top of the bar.
- GOAL! UNBELIEVABLE! Just over 30 minutes remaining and McGree levels it up with one of the greatest Hyundai A-League goals of all time!
- GOAL! The comeback is complete, Hoffman pouncing on an Osama Malik mistake to put Newcastle ahead.
- CHANCE: In stoppage time, substitute Nick Fitzgerald heads over at the far post as Daniel Arzani's whipped delivery skims off the turf.
Bruno Fornaroli, Melbourne City 15': 0-1
Dario Vidosic reaches the byline to the left of goal and drives a brilliant low cross into the middle where it bounces off Fornaroli's knee, deflects off Topor-Stanley and dribbles over the line.
Riley McGree, Newcastle Jets 57': 1-1
Absolutely FREAKISH! McGree looks for the one-two with Ronny Vargas but, with the return ball slightly behind him, opts for a quick-thinking scorpion kick from the edge of the area that loops over an unsuspecting Dean Bouzanis.
Jason Hoffman, Newcastle Jets 75': 2-1
Petratos and Joey Champness combine to work the ball into the box. The latter's low ball in from the left is miscontrolled by Osama Malik and falls perfect to Hoffman, who dispatches it into the bottom right corner.