Melbourne were magnificent. Once again they were beaten by a long range thunderbolt and perhaps some poor keeping positioning from Michael Theoklitos. But the rest of the Melbourne team played like all stars.
Fantastic versatility as Victory opened up with a long ball game, switched to short passing and running through the middle, and back and also scored from a Billy Celeski taken free kick. I was left wondering about how under-utilised Celeski was by Perth Glory and just how they will make up his loss.
Melbourne will have no such worries. While Kevin Muscat, who played his best game in 12 months, may or may not be there next year, others are clearly going to step up. With Thompson still out from China's two footed foul, Danny Allsopp showed his class with two goals. Vargas scored a cracking header. And I though new boy Steven Pace was going OK until Melbourne went behind 1-2.
Osaka had massive advantages and showed just what is available to non-major league clubs if they are prepared to fork out big time for Brazilians - Jader Volnei Spindler (Bare) was everywhere and used his strength and pace to force his will and the injured Lucas Severino, who came on at half time, also scored the winning goal on the death of 90 minutes.
No yellows, no reds highlighted a high quality game by the ref Subkhiddin Moho Salleh.