Sydney pinches premiership

Two stunning goals worthy of the occasion have seen Sydney FC snatch the Hyundai A-League Premiership with a dramatic 2-0 win over Melbourne in a riveting finish to the regular season at the SFS on Sunday night.

Two stunning goals worthy of the occasion have seen Sydney FC snatch the Hyundai A-League Premiership with a dramatic 2-0 win over Melbourne in a riveting finish to the regular season at the SFS on Sunday night.

Karol Kisel's classy 25m volley on 34 minutes was bettered early in the second half when John Aloisi took the ball in his own half and kept the Victory defence back-pedalling before letting fly with a cracking left-foot shot that crept inside the near post.

Both are goal-of-the-year contenders, the occasion bringing the best out of the home side after it started the day two points behind its great rival.

The win not only gave the Sky Blues their first Premiers' Plate but also secured automatic qualification for next year's Asian Champions League, much to the delight of the pro-Sydney crowd of 25,407.

The only disappointment for the Sky Blues is that they may enter the final series without retiring skipper Steve Corica, whose regular season farewell ended in disappointment when he was forced from the field with a hamstring strain after just 18 minutes.

The former Qantas Socceroo must be at long odds to play in Thursday night's first leg major semi-final against Victory at Etihad Stadium.

Corica was perhaps caught out by the pace of the game early as both teams showed their intention to attack.

It was Nik Mrdja, the player at the centre of a pre-match controversy over his late season transfer from Central Coast, and Nick Ward who combined to prise open the Sydney defence on nine minutes.

A lovely one-two between the pair put Ward in space inside the box and he should have buried the chance, instead dragging his shot across the goal before turning to the heavens in anguish.

Kisel was typically lively, trying his luck from range on 24 minutes before being brought down by Grant Brebner minutes later, earning the uncompromising Victory midfielder a yellow card.

Kisel sought retribution soon after, taking Brebner's feet from under him to earn a place in the referee's book.

But in the 34th minute his name was again being scribbled down, this time for all the right reasons.

After the ball was headed from Terry McFlynn for Alex Brosque to nod onto Kisel, the diminutive No.6 hit the ball with the outside of his right boot and wheeled away in delight as it dipped and looped over goalkeeper Mitchell Langerak and into the right-hand corner of the net.

It was a goal of rare class but we were to see even better from Aloisi on 49 minutes.

McFlynn put his body on the line to win possession on his side of the centre circle, the ball squirting to Aloisi.

He turned Leigh Broxham immediately before finding himself in metres of space, tempting him towards the Melbourne goal.

Inexplicably, the Victory defence treated Aloisi like he had mumps, keeping a safe distance until it was too late.

By the time they reacted the ball was in the back of the net courtesy of a sweetly-hit 20m drive, the former Qantas Socceroo racing to the corner flag and grabbing it like he was a lead singer working the microphone at a rock concert.

Aloisi's third goal in two games stung the Victory into action and they were unlucky not to pull one back on 57 minutes.

Mrdja did well to keep his feet and hold off Simon Colosimo before striking the left post with a shot on the turn.

It was as close as the visitors would come, the season's biggest SFS crowd literally singing and dancing in the rain as the Premiers' Plate was handed over to the Sky Blues for the first time.

Missing Archie Thompson and Kevin Muscat, Melbourne will feel better days are ahead in the finals.

But they will be sweating on the fitness of Robbie Kruse, who left the field on a stretcher late in the game with what looked a serious ankle problem

Sydney FC 2 (Kisel 34, Aloisi 49) Melbourne Victory 0 Crowd: 25.407 at the Sydney Football Stadium