NEWCASTLE Jets' big guns fired as the A-League side out-gunned a gallant Edgeworth 5-1 at Jack McLaughlan Oval on Wednesday night to progress to the quarter-finals of the FFA Cup.
Of all the local NPL sides, Edgeworth - given their history in the tournament and big-match experience - were given the best chance of springing an upset.
They pushed the Jets to the limit in a 1-0 loss a month ago in a friendly.
Many of the 4,297 who packed the suburban ground were hoping for a thriller.
But the difference in class was clear from the outset.
With former Premier League star Wes Hoolahan and Socceroo Dimi Petratos pulling the strings, Nick Fitzgerald causing nightmares down the left wing and Abdiel Arroyo menacing up front, the Jets dominated.
However, it was Edgeworth veteran and former Central Coast Mariner Daniel McBreen who provided the highlight of the night with stunning strike from 20 metres to level at 1-all.
His goal in the 17th minute cancelled out Arroyo's seventh minute opener.
Hoolahan put the Jets back in front in the 38th minute and Petratos converted from the spot two minutes later.
Second-half goals to Fitzgerald (61st) and Petratos (77th) sealed progression to the final eight for the first time.
"We knew it would be particularly hard in the first 15 to 20 minutes and they gave everything they had," Jets coach Ernie Merrick said. "We have been working on one-touch football in the box, but the boys decided in the first half it was two or three touches. We could have scored a number of goals. But we kept getting in there and we kept possession of the ball well in the front third.
"Arroyo scoring was terrific. Wes Hoolahan was fantastic with his service forward to Arroyo and Nick Fitzgerald showed what he can do.
"Wes' vision and passing range is first class. He is never under pressure with the ball, and if he gives it away, he is quick enough to get it back again."
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Arroyo had a chance to put the Jets ahead in the second minute but his header lacked venom.
Three minutes later Fitzgerald hit the woodwork with a cross-turned-shot as the chances continued to flow.
At the other end, McBreen lunged for a header at the near post but couldn't make contact.
Fitzgerald was dynamite down the left. He cut inside and burst into the box but his off-balance shot flew high.
It was third time lucky. Again Fitzgerald burned Aaron Oppedisano and fired in a cross. This time he found Arroyo, who produced a predator's finish.
The opening 15 minutes was all the Jets.
Jets right back Matt Millar stuck his leg out to intercept a piercing pass. The ball rebounded into the zone of the former A-League golden boot and he produced a snap shot with his left foot from 20 metres. Lewis Italiano was off his line and could only watch as the ball arrowed into the top left corner.
The goal provided a lift for the home side, if only momentarily.
McBreen had another first-time shot flash past the left post.
But most of the action was in the Edgeworth penalty area. Arroyo hit the base of of the post with a header, Hoolahan had a shot deflect over the bar and you lost count of the times the ball pin-balled in the goal mouth only to be knocked clear.
The pressure finally produced a goal in the 38th minute. Again it came down the left. Fitzgerald crossed for Hoollahan. The Iriishman scuffed his first attempt but showed composure to collect the scraps and slot home with his right.
They extended the lead two minutes later when Sam Maxwell was ruled to have felled Millar in the box.
Petratos made no mistake from the spot, crashing a thunderous right foot shot into the roof of the net.
The second half was more of the same. The Jets controlled the tempo and created the bulk of the chances.
Edgeworth, to their credit, battled and scrapped hard and bombed forward on the counter attack.
Any chance of miracle comeback by the minnows ended in the 62nd minute when Fitzgerald finished off a sweeping movement.
Petratos completed the rout with a fortuitous goal in the 77th.