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Phoenix smash Melbourne Vic. in last match in front of fans before coronavirus ban

Wellington have said farewell to home supporters with a stylish 3-0 win to almost certainly torpedo the A-League playoff hopes of Melbourne Victory.

The game was played on Sunday in an uncertain atmosphere, given the impact of coronavirus on the league, but there was no doubt who the better team was at Sky Stadium.

Goals to prolific attackers, Ulises Davila, Gary Hooper and David Ball, handed third-placed Wellington their fourth-straight win and a sixth in a row at home.

It was an appropriately stylish display from the hosts, who made a point to thank their fanbase after full-time.

Border restrictions to stymie the spread of Covid-19 has left Phoenix management resigned to playing the remainder of their season in Australia, where they look odds-on to participate in the finals.

However, they would first need to undergo self-isolation for 14 days before resuming their campaign, as would Melbourne Victory, meaning the next two games for both teams would need to be rescheduled.

The Kiwi club sit nine points clear of seventh place and are just a point behind second-placed Melbourne City, with a game in hand.

Victory's 12th loss of the season came off the back of another lacklustre performance. They can finish with no more than 35 points, a tally which is historically not enough to play in the post-season.

David Ball
David Ball celebrates goal for Phoenix with teammates.

The scoring began in the third minute when Davila volleyed home from close range, recording an 11th goal of the season to celebrate the birth of his first child a day earlier in his native Mexico.

Hooper doubled the lead with a brilliant flick header while facing away from goal, the Englishman sending Liberato Cacace's floating cross past a bemused Lawrence Thomas.

Ball's mazy run and strike from the top of the box made it three soon after halftime.

Victory stung the palms of Phoenix goalkeeper Stefan Marinovic a couple of times but were distinctly second-best for the most part, mirroring their sluggish finish when conceding four goals last week to leaders Sydney FC.

Coach Carlos Salvachua named star striker Ola Toivonen on the bench because of a suspected hamstring strain.

The Swede replaced 18-year-old A-League debutant Birkan Kirdar for the final half-hour and looked to have registered a consolation goal but was deemed offside.

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