IT was a fiery affair, but Wangaratta’s 2-3 loss to Myrtleford in the final round of FFA Cup qualifying matches will have little bearing on the remainder of the Red Devils’ preparations for the 2017 Albury Wodonga Football Association season.
The Devils fought back from a 0-2 deficit at halftime to level the scores, before Nagus Henry found the net in the 88th minute to secure victory for the Savoys.
The talking point of the clash came during the second half when a melee broke out, with both sides reduced to 10 men after red cards were handed out to Matteo Shuaipi and Hamish Busk.
But Wangaratta assistant coach Mario Antonello hosed down speculation that there was any malicious intent.
“(Shuaipi) went in studs up and collected our keeper, Jaxon Osmotherley, late,” Antonello said.
“Aaron Taylor remonstrated with him and (Shuaipi) grabbed him by the throat.