12 Dec 2008

Adelaide beat Waitakere

6:06 am on 12 December 2008

Captain Travis Dodd's late goal gave Adelaide United a 2-1 victory over New Zealand part-timers Waitakere United in the opening match of the Fifa Club World Cup.

Waitakere took a shock lead in the 34th minute when Welsh midfielder Paul Seaman hooked home against the run of play after an error from Adelaide goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic.

Defender Daniel Mullen equalised for Adelaide five minutes later with a bullet header, before Dodd glanced a Paul Reid free kick home seven minutes from time to spare his side's blushes.

The match was the 100th in the various forms of the competition, including its forerunner the Intercontinental Cup, played between the champions of Europe and South America.

European champions Manchester United are clear favourites to win this year's seven-team FIFA tournament in Japan.

Adelaide will take on Japan's Gamba Osaka on Sunday in a rematch of last month's Asian Champions League final, which the J-League side won 5-nil on aggregate.

After a poor display in the event last year, the Waitakere coach Chris Milicich says they wanted redemption and they got it.... he believes they've categorically proved that Oceania deserves to be there.