Written by the Football Federation Australia
Canberra United has clinched fourth place in the Westfield W-League after beating Adelaide 3-0 on Saturday afternoon.
Canberra had sweat on the result of the final match of the season, but thanks to Perth's 2-0 win over Melbourne, the capital side qualified for the finals.
The match saw a ferocious start from both teams with some quick passing between the forwards. A surge from Ashleigh Sykes in the third minute almost gave Canberra the early advantage but the cross could not be backed up.
Dual international Elyse Perry looked like she could have attacked at any stage and set up some genuine opportunities but the support from her team came just a fraction too late.
Emily Van Egmond almost put Canberra in front in the 15th minute after a great cross from Perry who was by far the stand out player in the early stages of the match.
It wasn't until the 23rd minute that Adelaide took some serious possession with Rebecca Quigley sending one into the arms Canberra keeper Lydia Williams.
With 10 minutes to go to half time the tempo of the match stepped up with both sides looking for the breakthrough.
Lydia Williams was quick to defend two Adelaide corners before the ball travelled back up to the Canberra goal where Shu O Tseng put some nice footwork on display just in front of goal but again the side could not capitalise on their position.
Play seemed to settle right before the end of the first half with some consistent passing and tackling by the Reds who did their best to wrangle the ball off the persistent hosts, but neither side was able to crack the deadlock until the 45th minute when a Perry corner was headed straight into the net by Ellie Brush putting Canberra one goal up at half time.
Van Egmond was looking to continue the momentum early in the second half, putting in a long kick that was quickly captured by McLaren.
An Adelaide foul in the 49th minute could have given Canberra a chance to almost seal the win but keeper again McLaren was too quick in her response.
Both teams were playing some very persistent football, progressively steering the ball down to their respective goal ends a number of times but the chances were not being backed up.
Despite their lead Canberra was not slacking off, keeping the lion's share of possession into the 70th minute. While their strikes were on target, McLaren's reflexes in goal were one step above.
Adelaide came alive again in the 75th minute with some swift runs down centre field but Canberra defenders were quick off the mark, determined not to let the game slip from their hands.
Adelaide continued to keep the spark alive into the 80th minute with Lauren Chilvers forcing some great attack, but like their capital counterparts, the ability to convert was just not there.
Canberra all but potted the match in the 88th minute when Van Egmond slammed the ball into the back of the net after a relentless surge down the middle.
Their win was sealed in the 91st min when Perry tapped in after a delicate cross from Van Egmond.
Goals scorer Van Egmond said the team would be waiting anxiously on the outcome of the Perth and Melbourne clash.
"Hopefully Perth will come away with a win. I've been on the phone with some of the Perth players pumping them up," she said.
"Even if we donít make the finals we will still come away with a positive attitude because we played really well today."
Canberra United Coach Ray Junna said he couldn't have asked for more than a win, however, this match was a little frustrating for him.
"We've created numerous opportunities but we need more of that knowhow and killer instinct in front of goal," he said.
"We will continue to play the same way if we make the finals, attacking and trying to keep possession."