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Goals the key for Team Wellington in final

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 30/03/2017

Team Wellington won't ditch their high-octane approach when they seek back-to-back titles against Auckland City FC in the national Premiership final.

The powerhouse Auckland club were denied a seventh crown last year when beaten 4-2 in extra time in the decider.

Team Wellington striker Tom Jackson says they've learned that an attacking approach is the best way of toppling the northerners, who are making a ninth final appearance.

The final, in Auckland on Sunday, will be a clash of styles, with the Wellington club's 51 goals eclipsing the nine other teams, including Auckland City FC's 32.

However, the top-qualifying home side have conceded a league-low 15 goals - far more miserly than Team Wellington's 32.

"If we can go out and play how I know we can play with good, attacking, aggressive football then hopefully we can go back-to-back," said Jackson, the league's Golden Boot winner with 18 goals to his name.

Fellow-English forward Ben Harris has bagged 12 while three-cap All Whites midfielder Joel Stevens has also been prolific, including two goals in their remarkable semi-final win over Waitakere United.

The match last Sunday was locked 4-4 at fulltime and 6-6 after extra time before Team Wellington prevailed in a penalty shootout.

Auckland City FC had less frills, beating Hawke's Bay United 1-0.

First-year coach Jose Figueira says unlocking the Aucklanders' defence will be a sizeable challenge.

The players need only reflect on the clubs' two meetings this season to ensure they are focused.

Auckland City FC won their opening-round match 4-0 in October and were nearly as dominant in a 3-1 mid-season win in Wellington.

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