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Auckland City FC take control of OFC final

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 30/04/2017

Auckland City FC Joao Moreira. © Power Sport Images/Getty Images Auckland City FC Joao Moreira. Auckland City FC have one foot on the plane to another FIFA club World Cup after taking control of their two-legged final against Team Wellington.

The home side won 3-0 at the Kiwitea Street ground, boosted by a first-half double to Portuguese striker Joao Moreira.

Moreira could have had a hat-trick but his penalty attempt in the second half was saved by Team Wellington goalkeeper Scott Basalaj.

However, the home side made it three near the final whistle through a tap-in to Ryan de Vries.

It means Auckland City FC hold a commanding position heading into the second match in Wellington next Sunday.

If victorious on aggregate, they will be Oceania's representatives at the club World Cup for a seventh successive year. This year's tournament is in the United Arab Emirates in December.

Team Wellington suggested they would be worthy contenders when beating the Aucklanders in the national domestic final earlier this month.

Both teams marched unbeaten through the Champions League but Team Wellington found themselves on the back foot early on Sunday.

Moreira converted from the penalty spot after he was brought down by a diving Basalaj in the 19th minute.

He fired home nine minutes later to double the later.

Team Wellington created their share of chances, particularly late in the game, but couldn't snare an all-important away-goal.

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