Melbourne Victory won the 2009 A-League Grand Final when they defeated Adelaide United 1-0 in Melbourne on Saturday night.

Tom Pondeljak scored the only goal of the match when he struck from long range mid-way through the second half.

The spectacle was marred by the referee when he sent off Adelaide’s Cristiano after just nine minutes of the game having been played.

The straight red-card was shown after the striker was judged to have used his elbow unlawfully as he contested a header.

Television replays showed that there was little contact between Cristiano and the defender and that the red card decision was rather harsh. Nonetheless, Adelaide battled for almost an hour with one man less until the referee again pulled out his red card to send off former South Melbourne striker, Danny Alsopp.

The match was the sixth meeting between the two sides, and the Victory have won all six. Two years ago, Melbourne crushed Adelaide in the Grand Final 6-0.

Archie Thompson came under scrutiny for making mocking gestures towards the Adelaide fans after the final whistle, while Victory fans jeered en masse as Adelaide’s Travis Dodd appeared on the presentation podium.

Prior to the match the CBD of Melbourne was awash with police including members of the elite Special Operations Group. Victory fans have a history of violent confrontations with both Adelaide and Sydney FC fans.