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Navy Blues set for Cup crunch

Words: ACFC Media

Friday 30 July 2021

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - Auckland City FC are set for action as their Chatham Cup quarter-final with Wellington giants Miramar Rangers looms large.

Miramar Rangers have won the Chatham Cup four times and are eager to add a fifth title to their collection with the Navy Blues standing between them and history.

They've lost just once at home in the Chatham Cup in the past six years, an extra time defeat to Wellington Olympic in 2019, making David Farrington Park a fortress.

Navy Blues boss José Figueira is aware the advantage David Farrington Park brings for Miramar Rangers and, in the past, Team Wellington, but he remains steadfast his side will give a good account of themselves.

"Miramar have won the Chatham Cup four times and they have a very impressive home record in the Cup but any game we enter, no matter the opposition, I'm confident.

"Travelling away from home is always tricky but I know that when we find our rhythm, control and tempo we are very difficult to stop.

"We've had a great week of preparation and we come into this game as best prepared as we can be for whatever lies ahead," he said.

Figueira knows the role luck can play in a Cup run. 

City overcame Birkenhead United at their parochial home ground of Shepherds Park courtesy of a penalty shoot-out and when the draw revealed another away trip, this time to the capital, Figueira raised a wry smile.

"My first thought about the draw was one of excitement. As a club we want to be challenging for titles. The Chatham Cup is no different for us this year.

"If you want to have the opportunity to challenge for these types of titles and get to finals you are inevitably going to cross paths with clubs who are aspiring to do the same - Miramar Rangers are one of those clubs," he said.

Miramar Rangers have romped to wins over every team they've faced this season with Sam Mason-Smith grabbing 17 goals and former Navy Blues forward Joao Moreira also getting in on the act with ten.

Their midfield features two bright talents in Andy Bevin and Ollie Whyte and there is a familiar identity to Miramar Rangers that is difficult to ignore.

"There are one or two similarities between Team Wellington and Miramar Rangers in as much as Miramar have coach Scott Hales and a core group of players that remained together from the Team Wellington days.

"But Miramar Rangers is an iconic New Zealand football club in its own right and having watched them a number of times so far this season its clear they are a very different side from the summer.

"Miramar have a had a very strong season to date and like ourselves have already booked their place in the National Championship Round.

"After many months of competing regionally, it will be great to see exactly where we are as a team and test ourselves against a fellow national league opposition," he said.

In other Chatham Cup last eight action, Melville United also travel to Wellington to take on Western Suburbs, Hamilton Wanderers entertain Cashmere Technical and North Shore United play host to surprise packets Otago University.

All matches, including Auckland City FC's, kick off at 2.00pm NZDT.

Saturday's match will be streamed live on YouTube here and the Kiwitea Street clubrooms will be open to show to all club members from 1.30pm NZDT.

Ends

Match Details
Saturday 31 July 2021
Chatham Cup 1/4 Finals
Miramar Rangers v Auckland City FC
David Farrington Park, Wellington
Kick-off: 2.00pm NZDT
LIVE STREAM: Click here.

AC: 18. Conor TRACEY (GK), 2. Mario ILICH, 3. Adam MITCHELL, 4. Mario BILEN, 6. Brian KALTAK, 7. Cam HOWIESON (c), 8. Adam THURSTON, 9. Angus KILKOLLY, 10. Dylan MANICKUM, 11. Reid DRAKE, 12. Sam BROTHERTON, 14. Jordan VALE, 17. Andrew BLAKE, 19. Myer BEVAN, 20. Addison STEWART, 24. Cameron BROWN (GK). 

COACH: José FIGUEIRA
ASSISTANT COACH: Ivan VICELICH
GK COACH: Enaut ZUBIKARAI
PHYSIO: Matt PAYNE
TEAM MANAGER: Keith COTON
S&C COACH: Adria CASALS
ANALYST: Jarrod WALLACE
ANALYST: Dan GORDON

OTHER FIXTURES

SATURDAY 31 JULY 2021

CHATHAM CUP 1/4 FINALS
Hamilton Wanderers v Cashmere Technical
Porritt Stadium, Hamilton - kick-off: 2.00pm NZDT

North Shore United v Otago University
Allen Hill Stadium, North Shore - kick-off: 2.00pm NZDT

Western Suburbs v Melville United
Wellington - kick-off: 2.00pm NZDT

ABOUT MIRAMAR RANGERS

Miramar Rangers is one of the most successful in New Zealand having won the Chatham Cup four times (1966, 1992, 2004 & 2010) and the National League title twice (2002 & 2003). Over the last decade the club has played in the Central Premier League and have won this competition a record six times most recently in 2020.

PREVIOUS MEETINGS
There have been no previous meetings between the two clubs.

BIGGEST LEAGUE WIN
v. Wellington United won 13-0, 2019

BIGGEST LEAGUE DEFEAT
v. Christchurch United lost 0-8, 1988
v. Lower Hutt City lost 0-8, 1996
v. Wanganui Athletic lost 0-8, 1996

BIGGEST CUP WIN
v. Rangitikei Rangers won 13-0, 1999

BIGGEST CUP DEFEAT
v. Wanganui Athletic lost 1-7, 1996

PLAYER TO WATCH
Former Navy Blues striker Joao Moreira has kept up his knack of scoring goals for whomever he plays for and this season is no exception with the former Portuguese age group international netting 10 goals this season. Another familiar face among the goals is former Hawke's Bay United and Team Wellington forward Sam Mason-Smith. Mason-Smith has smashed in 17 goals in the Central League and Chatham Cup and will be one to keep an eye on.

CURRENT FORM
v. Waterside Karori won 2-1 (Jake WILLIAMS, Nathan SIMES)
v. Western Suburbs won 4-1 (Andy BEVIN 2, Sam MASON-SMITH, Haris ZEB)
v. Lower Hutt City won 1-0 (Owen BARNETT)
v. Wainuiomata won 6-0 (Scott MIDGLEY, Sam MASON-SMITH 2, Joao MOREIRA 2, Jake WILLIAMS)
v. North Wellington drew 1-1 (Joao MOREIRA)
v. Wairarapa United won 8-1 (Jorge AKERS, Andy BEVIN, Sam MASON-SMITH 3, Ollie WHYTE, Joao MOREIRA 2)
v. Petone won 4-0 (Sam MASON-SMITH 3, Liam WOOD)
v. Napier City Rovers won 4-1 (Andy BEVIN, Joao MOREIRA 3)
v. Wellington Olympic drew 0-0
v. Western Suburbs drew 0-0
v. Havelock North Wanderers won 5-0 (Joao MOREIRA, Owen BARNETT, Jorge AKERS, Ollie WHYTE, Andy BEVIN) - Chatham Cup
v. Waterside Karori won 4-1 (Sam MASON-SMITH 2, Haris ZEB, Max BATCHELOR)
v. North Wellington won 4-1 (Scott MIDGLEY, Hariz ZEB, Sam MASON-SMITH, BREDEVELDT) - Chatham Cup
v. North Wellington won 5-2 (Sam MASON-SMITH 2, Haris ZEB, Nathan SIMES, Owen BARNETT)
v. Wainuiomata won 7-1 (Scott MIDGLEY, Jorge AKERS, Ollie WHYTE 2, Owen BARNETT 2, Joao MOREIRA)
v. Lower Hutt city won 4-1 (Sam MASON-SMITH 3, Own Goal) - Chatham Cup
v. Wairarapa United won 5-0 (Andy BEVIN 2, Ollie WHYTE, Haris ZEB, Nathan SIMES)
v. Lower Hutt City lost 2-4 (Ollie WHYTE, Nathan SIMES)

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