The Victory Vault – Dadi’s decisive double


With less than two weeks to go until our blockbuster Round 23 clash with Melbourne Victory at HBF Park (click HERE for tickets) we thought it was the prefect time to explore the rivalry that has built up between Glory and the navy-and-whites over the years.

There has, of course, been no shortage of drama, excitement and controversy and with our 42 Hyundai A-League meetings yielding 17 wins for Glory, 15 for Victory, plus 10 draws, not much to choose between the sides either.

Our first visit to the Victory Vault takes us back to December 2008 and a game that was ultimately dominated by flamboyant frontman, Eugene Dadi.

What can we say about Eugene?

Well, he was definitely a larger-than-life character.

Let’s face it, Glory haven’t had many players on their books who boasted flowing dreadlocks and their own fashion label.

And certainly in his debut season, he scored enough goals and showed enough swagger to have a chant dedicated to him by an adoring section of The Shed.

The former Cote d’Ivoire international had found the net on five occasions by the time Glory hosted Victory in Round 14 and he was to take his personal tally to seven as Dave Mitchell’s ran out 3-1 winners, a performance made all the more impressive by the fact that the visitors would end that season clinching the Premiership/Championship double.

Dadi actually featured twice in Glory’s opener, flicking Jimmy Downey’s long ball into the path of Adriano Pellegrino and then rifling home the cross that was eventually clipped in from the right by Adrian Trinidad.

His celebration was, well, prolonged, featuring some extensive finger pointing in the general direction of The Shed and an appreciative kiss on the head for Pellegrino.

Fans v Victory in 2008

But he was to take things to the next level after making it 2-0 to the hosts in the 23rd minute.

This time he latched on to a Pellegrino corner, turned neatly in the box and fired home a low shot and then he was off and running.

And his shirt was off as well, revealing a sleeveless t-shirt that, to be honest, looked more K-Mart than Armani.

Nonetheless, a beaming Eugene took time to high-five just about every fan in sight, with Trinidad deciding to seize the opportunity to join in.

It felt like party time at nib Stadium and although Ney Fabiano’s reply for Victory on the hour-mark let a little air out of the Glory balloon, it was fully inflated again 12 minutes from time.

Again Dadi was involved, winning the initial header and laying the ball off for Pellegrino who did the rest, almost casually bending the ball into the top corner with the instep of his left foot from just outside the box.

A little over a month later, Dadi would bag another brace as Victory were downed again at nib, but that is a game we may well focus on later in the Victory Vault series.

In the meantime, we’d love to get your memories of this game and of Eugene’s time with Glory at a wider level, so click HERE to view the goals and please join the conversation via Facebook HERE or Twitter HERE.