THE Sydney FC W-League squad has finished third in the International Women’s Club Championship in Japan after a dramatic end to their play off in Kagoshima, Japan.
The Sky Blues led 3-1 with four minutes of regular time to go but two late goals from the South American Champions Colo Colo sent the game into a penalty shootout.
Renee Rollason, Anna Green, Nicola Bolger and Samantha Kerr all scored from the spot while goalkeeper Casey Dumont saved one and Colo Colo hit the post with another to hand Sydney FC the win.
The final between Japanese side INAC Kobe Leonessa and Chelsea Ladies FC will be played today.
Head Coach Alan Stajcic made five changes to the side which started against Chelsea in the semi-final on Wednesday night with Ralston, Foord, Harrison, Bolger and Camilleri all coming into the starting line-up.
Midfielder Trudi Camilleri started well putting a shot just wide after five minutes, however the South American Champions took the lead in 10 minutes through Venezulan midfielder Yusmery Ascanio.
Sydney FC were on level terms in 23 minutes with dual international Ellyse Perry getting on the end of a Sydney FC corner. Within a minute the Sky Blues were ahead with the heavily involved Camilleri striking home from the restart.
The Chilean’s task got harder five minutes before half time when their number six Soto was dismissed for a second yellow card.
The scoreline remained at 2-1 to the Sky Blues until ten minutes from time when centre half Renee Rollason popped up with her second goal of the tournament to make it 3-1.
The goal looked to have put the match beyond the South Americans who were down to ten women, but a strike four minutes from time pulled one back, and then a goal in the final minute sent the game into a penalty shootout.
Despite conceding two late goals the Sky Blues players held their nerve from the spot to secure the third place in the tournament.
“We’re happy to win the game today and it was a tough tournament. We were the only team to play three games in a week so were a little tired towards the end,” Stajcic said.
“We’re proud of how we played and performed and would like thank the Japanese Football Association for inviting an Australian team.
"I think we definitely showed that we deserved to be here. We’ve just beaten the South American Champions, we beat one of the best teams in Asia (NTV Beleza) and should really have beaten the European team at this competition (Chelsea Ladies FC).
“Today we really dominated the match but need to work on our finishing as we should have put the game away long before the end.
“We’re happy to support this tournament and hope that Australian teams are invited back as we really showed that we can match it with the best teams around the world.”
The Sky Blues were presented with a cheque for $10,000 for finishing in third place in the tournament.
The girls will be back in W-League action next weekend in a double header at Allianz Stadium on Sunday afternoon (15th December, 2.15pm kick off). They take on Melbourne Victory, who they beat 5-1 earlier in the season, prior to the Hyundai A-League match against Melbourne Heart, both of which will be televised live on Fox Sports.