JOHNNY WARREN – CHAMPION OF CHAMPIONS
The 2012 edition of the Johnny Warren Champions of Champions Cup was contested at the Cornubia Sports Stadium on Sunday the 9th December. The competition named after the late great ” Johnny Warren ” and full endorsed by the ” Johnny Warren Foundation “, is testament that Futsal is a contributing factor of the level of developing footballers for the future of Australian football.
The number #1 ranked club team in each age division from across SE Qld played against each other to see who would be the FFA/FQ Club Champion of Champions. This years competition saw the introduction of 3 new age groups. Ages 9, 15 and open men were introduced. Thus increasing the age groups to 9′s through to Open Men.
Every game was closely contested and played in the spirit of great sportsmanship and friendship. Throughout the day approximatley 1500 spectators cheered and shouted in support of their team. The loudest part of the day were the finals as teams gave it their all with winning margins being 2 goals or less . The 13′s and Men’s finals were decided by the dreaded penalty shoot out and the 12′s final was decided with the winning goal being scored with less than a second left on the game clock.
I am very proud of the players and teams that participated in this years Johnny Warren Cup, The team represented Brisbane Magic with pride and distinction. The fact that we had teams in 6 out of 8 age groups, 5 making finals and taking home 3 champions trophies is a testament of the strength of the Competition at Brisbane Magic
Finals round up:
The 9′s final was contested by Rocking Rovers from Brisbane Magic Futsal Club and Stikers from Gold Coast City Futsal. The final was a seesawing battle between two very evenly talented teams. Both teams taking the lead though out the game only to have the other counter and draw level. The game was finally decided when the Brisbane team scored 2 unanswered goals late in the second half. 7-5
The 10′s final saw both teams from The Gold Coast decided who is to be the champion team. Goannas from the Varsity competition and Gladiators from the Coomera League locked horns for bragging rights in the local derby. In the end Goannas displayed why they are the champions boasting a team filled with regional and state representative players. The Gladiators, in their maiden attempt at the Johnny Warren Champions Cup put up a strong display of Futsal, however the Goannas’ with all their experience and talented squad of players ran out winners 12-1
The 11′s final saw The Magic from Brisbane Magic Futsal playing Redbacks from the Gold Coast. The game was played at a frantic pace as both teams thrilled the crowd with skills well beyond their years. A tight final was expected as both teams ended equal group leaders on points however Redbacks topped the group by 3 goals. In the end fatigue must have been a factor as The Magic ran out comfortable winners 12-7
The 12′s final was a replay of the 11′s final in 2011 and unsurprisingly will probably be the final next year in the 13′s. Wolves FC from Brisbane Magic Club and Dream Team from the Sunshine Coast lived up to expectations and didn’t disappoint the large crowd. Wolves looked like they had their nemeses measure as they held onto a slender one goal lead and looked like taking revenge on the Sunshine Coast team until a defence splitting through ball found an unmarked player on the back post drew both teams level with a minute left. The game most likely looked like it was going to be decided by penalties, but in a freak turn of events the winning goal was scored with 0.6 seconds left thus making the Dream Team a truly Dream Team wining 7-6.
The 13′s final pitted YOLO from the Brisbane Magic club and the Inbetweeners from the Gold Coast. YOLO lead for most of the game however losing players due to injury during the group games took its toll on the team and allowed the Inbetweeners the edge they needed to force the game in an enthralling penalty shoot out. Both team were even after the mandatory 5 spot kicks, which it into sudden death. The 8th penalty was superbly saved by the Gold Coast keeper low and to his left. All eyes were on the last penalty taker for the Inbetweeners, who calmly sent the YOLO keeper the wrong way, sending the boys into rapture and delight. Inbetweeners winning 6-5 on penalties.
The 14′s final did not go to script as the Redland Rebels took on their more fancied opponents The Sharks from the Gold Coast. The Sharks dominated throughout the group stages by winning all their group games. The rebels coach proved to be a master tactician by changing the rebels playing style to more of a Brazilian Joga Bonito free flowing game which proved the difference and handed the Brisbane Club it’s third champions trophy of the day winning 4-2
The 15′s final was a perfect curtain raiser for the Men’s game. The Dragons from the Sunshine Coast played a team from Toowoomba. The Dragons came out hard and scored early to take a nice into the break. The second half saw a Toowoomba resurgence and battle back to taken the game into penalties. After the two teams scored with their first attempts, the dragons keeper saved the next 3 penalties as the Dragons were crowned champions by winning 5-2 on penalties.
The marquee event of the evening the men’s final, turned out to be a clash of the titans.. Numpties FC from the Gold Coast and the Storm from the Sunshine Coast battled it out like two heavyweights decide the champions. Both teams filled with representative players and players that can change a game in a blink of an eye, was a mouth watering to the crowd. The previous group game was a close affair with Numpties running out eventual winners 5-4 which setup the an intense final.
The Storm raced to a 3-0 lead in the first 7 minutes only to wake the Gold Coast up were they answered with two goals of their own eventually drawing closer at the halftime break with the score at 3-2 to Sunshine Coast. Within minutes of the restart Numpties came out all guns blazing to draw level and eventually got in front through an unlucky own goal. On a fast breakaway the Gold Coast flanker passed the ball across the field to an open player only for an unlucky storm defender who stuck a leg out to block the pass only to send his keeper the wrong way and deflect the ball into his own goal to make it 5-4 to the Gold Coast with only minutes left on the clock. The Storm sent the crowd wild by drawing level with approx 1:30 left to play which left both Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast teams searching for the eventual winner. Both teams had chances that they should of put away before the final whistle which led to a penalty shootout. Gold Coast marksmen scored all their spot kicks with both precision and power. The Storm players kept up by answering back with their own perfectly taken penalties. The defining moment came in the third round of penalties. The Gold Coast team had converted their attempts. Up stepped the young Sunshine Coast player and as many a football superstar has felt, the keeper guessing the right way and pulling off what became a match winning save. After an epic final the Numpties defeated the Storm 5-3 on penalties.