Central snap Onehunga’s 7-game winning streak

Central United have broken Onehunga United’s seven-game win streak in the Northern Regional Football League, thanks to a 2-0 victory at home on Saturday.

Armin Pasagic scored a penalty in the 42nd minute before Vincent Pineau sealed the deal with a goal in the 83rd.

Onehunga were sitting pretty at the top of the premier table, having allowed just six goals through in nine games. They were also at the top of the goal scoring charts making them the toughest side in the competition.

Meanwhile, Central had struggled for form in the opening half of the season, sitting third to last with just three wins from nine games.

However, with the end of the Stirling Sports Premiership and Oceania Football Confederation Champions League, Central were strengthened by a number of Auckland City players.

Central coach Aaron McFarland said their influence had been massive for his side.

“Having those few guys come back from national league sides definitely helped bolster our squad,” McFarland said.

“They definitely add some competition for spots, and we want to create a culture where it’s not just reputation that gets you on the team sheet but current performances.”

McFarland said the victory was good for his team considering Onehunga’s recent form, however, the Chatham Cup was where his team’s focus was.

The Chatham Cup was formed in 1923 and is New Zealand’s premier knockout football tournament, often involving between 120 to 150 teams across the country every year.

It is considered one of the most prestigious tournament’s in New Zealand football.

“The league is important, but for us the Chatham Cup is the really big goal,” McFarland said.

Auckland City midfielder and Central United captain Mario Illich echoed those sentiments and said the Chatham Cup was the most important cup for the team every year.

He said his team’s performance on Saturday was a good sign the team was starting to gel.

“It’s taken a while, but we’ve got on a roll now,” Illich said.

“We’ve got four or five guys back with more experience under their belts so I think we’re heading in the right direction, but it’s still going to be a bit of a climb.”

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