As far as Victorian’s are concerned this is the real derby despite there being a new derby in Sydney with the Western Sydney Warriors joining the competition this year. Archie Thompson later described “It was one of the best atmospheres in my whole time here.” It was his goal, off the crossbar, that sealed the win for the Victory fans. There were over 26,000 people at the ground (considered a sell-out due to the size of the ground) and it felt like most of them were Victory fans despite this being a Heart home game.
The first half was scoreless but a tough contest. After half time things really took off with around a dozen yellow cards and three goals with Victory winning 2-1 thanks to Thompson’s goal in the 92nd minute. All night it felt like Heart were going to take more advantage of their chances but luck was on our side and they missed nearly all of them. After he scored the goal he took off his shirt off and ran over to some Heart supporters who were giving him a hard time. For that he received a yellow card but who cares? The sight of Archie Thompson running around shirtless is enough to please any Victory fan. The fans nearly fooled him in to thinking the goal was disallowed. He put it back on but as soon as the ref blew the final whistle he took it off again and this time did a run up the wing to the cheers of Victory supporters. I’m sure all supporters were on a total high like I was.
The celebrations for his goal occurred right in front of us, allowing me to take this photo. I’d have to say it was my favourite of the night.