Auckland United beat Southern United in women’s National League Championship final

Auckland United beat Southern United in women’s National League Championship final

Auckland United celebrate Alexis Cook’s goal in the final of the women’s National League Championship.

Shane Wenzlick/Photosport

Auckland United celebrate Alexis Cook’s goal in the final of the women’s National League Championship.

At Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland: Auckland United 2 (Alexis Cook 24’, Maisey Dewell 57’) Southern United 0. HT: 1-0

A long-range strike from midfielder Maisey Dewell helped Auckland United win the 2023 women’s football National League Championship.

Dewell’s goal came midway through the second half of the final against Southern United on Sunday, doubling her side’s lead and effectively putting the game to bed.

Auckland United ultimately ran out 2-0 winners when the final whistle blew at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland, claiming their first National League Championship title.

Alexis Cook opened the scoring for Ben Bate’s Auckland United side midway through the first half, after Southern United had been the stronger starters.

Rene Wasi won the ball on the edge of the box then found Cook in open space on the right. Her fellow forward made no mistake with her shot past Lauren Paterson in the Southern United goal.

When the two teams met during the round-robin at Auckland United’s Keith Hay Park home a month ago, they were unable to be separated and had to settle for a 1-1 draw.

There was no chance of that happening on Sunday and Auckland United were composed in seeing out the game after getting themselves a two-goal lead.

The two finalists finished level on points after the nine-match round-robin and also had the same goal difference, with Auckland United topping the table as a result of scoring 25 goals to Southern United’s 22.

Southern United had only conceded six goals in 810 minutes of action before conceding two more in 90 in the decider.

By winning the National League Championship final, Auckland United have qualified for next year’s Oceania Women’s Champions League.

The first edition of that tournament was held earlier this year, but Eastern Suburbs’, the 2022 New Zealand champions, withdrew, citing concerns over costs, security and timing.

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