Melbourne City celebrate their win
Melbourne City celebrate their win TONY MCDONOUGH

Melbourne City clinches second straight W-League title

FOOTBALL: Like the great athletes they are, Melbourne City women timed their title run to perfection.

And with a 2-0 grand final win over Perth at nib Stadium, City became the first team in the nine-year history of the W-League to win back-to-back championships.

Player-coach Jess Fishlock landed a hammerblow for the visitors by scoring the opener in first half stoppage time, before Beverly Yanez sealed the win with a cross-cum-shot in the 72nd minute.

As a club, it is City's third title of the season after the men won the FFA Cup and the boys won the National Youth League last month.

And while the women didn't do it anywhere near as easily as last season's undefeated campaign, last night's success was no less sweet.

After a six-game winless run put its finals participation in doubt, City won four do-or-die matches in a row to lift the title.

It didn't concede a goal in its last three matches, while the brilliant Fishlock was the scorer of the winner in the semi-final against Canberra as well as the opener.

City had 55 per cent of possession, but Perth had 20 shots to 13.

"There's a lot of emotions going on right now," Fishlock said.

"The girls were brilliant, absolutely brilliant. Our (first) goal summed up the way we wanted to play.

"It was a tough season, there's no doubt about that and that just goes to show how much this league has grown - credit to all the other teams.

"But for us to go through the season that we have and come here, concede one goal in our last four games, that's no coincidence."

City completed a beautiful seven-pass move to score 32 seconds before half time.


Melbourne City celebrate their win at nib Stadium in Perth
Melbourne City celebrate their win at nib Stadium in Perth TONY MCDONOUGH

Fullback Steph Catley took the game on before using Yanez on the left, who played a neat one-two with Erika Tymrack inside the box.

Close to the byline, Yanez then played a low ball back to an inexplicably free Fishlock to tap home her seventh goal of the season with her outstretched right foot.

If the first was a thing of beauty, the second was a touch more fortuitous, with Yanez's scorching cross from the left finding its way in to the back of the net via the palms of Perth goalkeeper Gabrielle Dal Busco.

Glory was striving for a maiden W-League championship and much of its hopes had been placed upon the shoulders of Sam Kerr, scorer of 10 goals this season.

But the closest the Matildas sharpshooter would come would be a 69th minute header that flashed just wide.

City goalkeeper Lydia Williams said the feeling of winning the title was "surreal" after the season the team had had.

"I think that slump affected us at the time, but it almost made us stronger," Williams said.

News Corp Australia

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