A-League Review: Brisbane in control after Western Sydney slip up
Melbourne Victory booked their place in the A-League finals with a 3-1 victory over Western Sydney Wanderers on Saturday.
Leroy George's deflected free-kick put hosts Melbourne ahead at AAMI Park but both teams were reduced to 10 men in an eventful first half that saw seven minutes of additional time.
Alvaro Cejudo grabbed an equaliser but Michael Thwaite's foul on James Donachie at a corner gifted Melbourne the chance to equalise from the spot, with the offender also picking up his second yellow card in the process.
Besart Berisha eventually converted the penalty to restore Victory's lead, though not before team-mate Kosta Barbarouses was given his marching orders for a stamp on Keanu Baccus prior to the spot-kick.
Thomas Deng's volley in the 51st minute put the game beyond Wanderers, who now face a must-win clash with Brisbane Roar next week if they are to leapfrog their opponents and finish in the top six.
Melbourne, in contrast, are certain of a play-off berth, with the home triumph lifting them up to third.
Roar hold a two-point lead over nearest rivals Western Sydney in the table after they battled to a 1-0 win over Central Coast Mariners.
Henrique scored the only goal of the game, accepting Eric Bautheac's cut-back cross from the right wing to steer a low shot into the net in the 13th minute.
The victory was the perfect send-off for departing goalkeeper Michael Theo, who marked his final home game for the club with a clean sheet.
John Aloisi's side saw a strong penalty appeal for handball turned down but were fortunate when Andrew Hoole's free-kick for Mariners hit the bar.