Former Socceroo Luke Wilkshire coached the Wollongong Wolves to the 2019 NPL Championship in his debut season after they defeated Lions FC 4:3 at Albert Butler Park – check out all the action in our pic special above.
Lions took the lead in the 13th minute when Shaun Carlos headed home from an Andy Thompson corner.
Thomas James equalised from the penalty spot in the 52nd minute after Harry Callahan was fouled in the box by Lions captain, Matija Simic.
Wolves looked to have sealed it in the 80th minute when Takeru Okada tapped in from inside the 6-yard box but Lions sub Marek Madle equalised four minutes later to push the match into extra time.
With scores still level after the first period of extra time, Bul Juach restored the Wolves' lead with a headed goal from a Taylor McDonald cross in the 109th minute
Thomas James sealed the result for Wolves in the 116th minute when he blasted his right-footed shot into the roof of the net from close range to complete his brace.
Lions gave Wolves a late scare when they pulled a goal back from the penalty spot through Joe Duckworth in the 119th minute, but Wolves held on to secure their first NPL Championship.
Wolves will also receive automatic entry into the FFA Cup 2020 Final Rounds.
Wolves' Harry Callahan took out the John Kosmina Medal for being the player of the NPL 2019 Grand Final which was presented by former Socceroo Alvin Ceccoli.
NPL 2019 Grand Final
Wollongong Wolves 4 (Thomas James 52’ (p)/116’, Takeru Okada 80’, Bul Juach 109’)
Lions FC 3 (Shaun Carlos 13’, Marek Madle 84’, Joe Duckworth 119’(p))
Albert Butler Park, Primbee, NSW
Kick-Off: 2:30pm (local) (2:30pm (AEST))
Referee: Stephen Laurie
Assistant Referee 1: Brad Wright
Assistant Referee 2: Emma Kocbek
Fourth Official: Tim Danaskos
Wollongong Wolves (NSW): 1.Justin Pasfield (gk) (c), 2.Taylor McDonald, 3.Darcy Madden, 4.Nikola Djordjevic, 9.Thomas James, 11.Takeru Okada (23.Jordan Nikolovski 108’), 14.Harry Callahan (13.Stefan Dimoski 117’), 15.Nicholas Littler, 16.Guy Knight (10.Brendan Griffin 94’), 17.James Stojcevski, 24.Lachlan Scott (8.Bul Juach 95’)
Substitutes Not Used: 12.Luke Kairies (gk)
Yellow Cards: James Stojcevski 40’, Justin Pasfield 53’, Guy Knight 91’, Harry Callahan 112’, Nikola Djordjevic 119’
Red Cards: Nil
Lions FC (QLD): 90.Luke Borean (gk), 2.Andy Thompson (17.Marek Madle 73’) , 4.Matija Simic (c), 5.Tommy Jarrard, 8.Mitch Hore, 10.Joe Duckworth, 11.Nathan Shepherd (9.Keegan Jelacic 62’), 12.Shaun Carlos (6.Nathan Reardon 73’), 13.Henry Hore, 15.Danny Kim, 16.Joshua Brindell-South (3.Leum Walpole 105’)
Substitutes Not Used: 20.Jacson Riley (GK)
Yellow Cards: Danny Kim 32’, Mitch Hore 54’/90+2’, Joshua Brindell-South 103’
Red Cards: Mitch Hore 90+2’
John Kosmina Medal Winner: Harry Callahan (Wollongong Wolves)