As Mathew Leckie and his Socceroos teammates painted Doha in green and gold, the Melbourne night sky was once again lit in red.

With the Socceroos creating history after their epic victory over Denmark to force their way into the World Cup round of 16, Melbourne again showed its passion for football with jubilant, heaving scenes at Federation Square in the earliest hours of the morning.

Fans packed themselves into the live site for what could have been Australia’s final performance in Qatar, needing a victory to ensure their place in the next stage of the tournament.

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A draw would have been good enough, too, had Tunisia lost to France, but with the French resting many of their star players after already locking up their spot in the round of 16, nothing was certain.

The tension mounted through the crowd in the first half, as Denmark looked like the better team throughout, hitting the Australian defence hard as they looked to claim the three points that would likely see them progress through the tournament.

However, Harry Souttar and his band of merry men stood firm throughout, keeping the score at 0-0 heading into the break.

But as the second half got underway, the murmurs rippled across the crowd as phones lit up with notifications informing them that Tunisia, against all odds, had scored.

Only a return of fire would see Australia survive.

And Leckie already had his ammo in the chamber.

Streaking down the field, before twisting and turning and deftly placing the ball past the Danish goalkeeper, the Socceroos players ignited in celebration.

Back in Melbourne, the now ever-familiar flares illuminated the crowd and rapture within.

“SHOW US FED SQUARE,” Sports Minister Annika Wells tweeted after Leckie weaved his way through the Denmark defence.

It was a scene usually saved for the football-mad Europeans or South Americans.

A fire burning bright, ignited by the left foot of a man born and bred in the western suburbs of Melbourne.

“Lively here,” came the understated tweet from Melbourne author Tony Wilson.

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The Victorian masses hugged their love ones, hugged their family, their friends, and strangers as the hope in Doha travelled all the way across the Indian Ocean, across the Nullarbor, and deep into the hearts of sport fans.

It was a stark contrast to scenes at the MCG just a week and a half ago, when Australia’s ODI cricket clash with England was attended by just 10,400 people.

As the crowd calmed down, the quiet nerves built again, with one eye on Tunisia and France, and the other on Australia and Denmark as the Danes peppered the Aussie defence again and again.

One goal from the men in red was all it was going to take to shatter Australian dreams.

As full-time drew ever closer, that nervous anticipation built, like a jack-in-the-box that ticked over to a slow tune of Men At Work’s Down Under, ready to explode in a cavalcade of cheers and tears.

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And then it happened. The final whistle blew.

The crowd was illuminated first by the white light of mobile phones held in the air to capture the moment forever, then inundated by that thick air of cordite pouring out of the flares.

Australia had won.

And Melbourne had earned the right to host at least one more party, this time against Argentina, this time at a more palatable time on a Sunday morning, with no need to worry about work later in the day, and no need to worry about the sleep lost from the night before.

Once again Fed Square will be blanketed in green, and gold, and red, and smoke.

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And the anticipation for it all was perfectly summed up by broadcaster Julian Marcus.

“We’re gonna need a bigger Fed Square.”