Dream come true for Gaitatzis
By John Greco
Teenage goal-scoring hero Michael Gaitatzis says it’s a dream come true to guide Sydney Olympic into the last 16 of the Westfield FFA Cup after he and older brother Harris sunk Manly United 3-1.
On an historic night at Cromer Park, 19-year-old Gaitatzis and his older sibling by eight years lifted Olympic off the canvas after they trailed 1-0 early into the second half.
After Chris Payne’s 10th minute opener sent the home fans into raptures, it was a brace of goals to Michael either side of Harris’ strike that ensured Olympic stayed alive and potentially get a shot at a Hyundai A-League club in the next round.
“It’s an honour and a privilege to be a part of this team and to score two important goals to get us through is something I’ll never forget,” Gaitatzis told www.theffacup.com.au after full-time.
“We’ve been looking forward to this for a long time and to be able to put it together on the night is a dream come true.
“Olympic is a proud club and it means a lot to the players, the fans and everyone to go as far as we can in the competition.
“Hopefully we can (get and A-League club in the next round) and show what we can do.”
Gaitatzis said the side never panicked despite being behind at the break and knew it was just a matter of getting back to their usual game to ensure they would finish over the top of United.
“We were a bit sloppy in the first half but we knew we had it in us to come back,” he said.
“We knew if we got back to our short passing game, one-two’s, we would create chances and that’s what happened.
“We played really well (in the second half) and the goals came.”
Ironically, Gaitatzis wasn’t even supposed to be in the starting side but an illness to youngster Will Angel this afternoon forced a change and it proved a lucky break for Olympic.