Auckland City have secured their third Northern League title in a row with an emphatic 6-1 win against Manukau United in front of their own fans at Kiwitea Street.
Striker Ryan de Vries made sure of the Northern League’s Golden Boot, scoring a hat-trick to finish the season with 19 goals, one ahead of Hamilton Wanderers’ Derek Tieku who scored a double in his side’s 4-4 draw with Birkenhead United.
Manukau’s loss consigned the club to finish at the foot of the table, and the South Aucklanders will be relegated with Takapuna.
Takapuna’s demise was due to Bay Olympic’s last-ditch 2-1 win against Manurewa, with Olympic’s winners coming late in the match.
The win was enough to secure safety for Olympic, on goal difference.
Going into the day’s games, Eastern Suburbs were still potential title winners, but they needed Auckland City to slip up, and the Lilywhites needed a win against Auckland United.
As it turned out, Suburbs and and Auckland United drew 2-2, leaving Suburbs unbeaten in their campaign but still four points adrift of the back-to-back champions Auckland City.
Main photo: Auckland City sharing the joy of another title. Photo credit: Auckland City.
Games played on Saturday September 2, 2023
Bay Olympic 2 (Ibrahim Nadir 84′ pen, William Eng 90+1′)
Manurewa 1 (Connor Probert 67′)
Auckland City 6 (Ryan de Vries 21′, 28′, 41′, Dylan Manickum 43′, Gerard Garriga 60′, Oliver Colloty 90+3′)
Manukau United 1 (Emman Rahimi 69′)
Western Springs 3 (Oscar Ramsay 12′ pen, Adama Coulibaly 58′, Reid Drake 90+1′)
Melville United 3 (Jakob England 16′, 38′ pen, Keegan Thompson 77′)
Eastern Suburbs 2 (Adam Thurston 45+2′ pen, Jackson Jarvie 90′)
Auckland United 2 (Josh Redfearn 68′, Fumiya Ito 88′)
West Coast Rangers 3 (Matthew Banks 17′, Allan Pearce 32′, 65′)
Takapuna 2 (Chase Taylor 62′, Joao Moreira 71′)
Birkenhead United 4 (Luke Jorgensen 9′ pen, Dan Morgan 14′, Cameron Mackenzie 61′, Dino Botica 90+7′)
Hamilton Wanderers 4 (Aston Hurd 23′, Sergio Sendra 30′, Derek Tieku 35′ pen, 45′)