Adelaide see red as Perth march to Glory

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In a match where both sides were coming off weekend loses, it was predicted to be a battle between Adelaide United’s defensive frailties versus Perth Glory’s general footballing ability frailties. In the end it was a pleasant surprise with Perth putting on a football show by claiming their first win in five in one of the more entertaining matches this season. The crowd was in good voice in a game which had everything bar a streaker and free ice-cream.

We didn’t have to wait long for the first goal of the match in the sixth minute with Jamie Coyne collecting his first goal since August 2008, which isn’t that far off when Perth scored their last goal as a team either! Following a Mile Sterjovski corner Coyne rose above a flat footed Paul Reid to strongly head home and to give the Reds an early taste of what was to become a bitter evening.

But the lead wasn’t to last, and in the 22nd minute it came from an unlikely source! Replacing Reid in his 50th A-League appearance, Jo Keenan calmly side-foot volleyed the ball into an unguarded net after Tando Velaphi could only passively punch a Robert Cornthwaite cross into his path.

Adelaide’s goal then brought on a period of many chances; Perth were looking the most dangerous with numerous chances falling to the team in purple, but Adelaide were looking very dangerous on the break and had shots on goal themselves.

But in the 36th minute Adelaide’s defence (their archilles heel all season) finally snapped and Sterjovski, who was dangerous all night, took advantage of a lapse of concentration to latch onto a ball dinked over the back by Josh Mitchell before rounding Eugene Galekovic to put the Glory in front going into half time.

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After a wonderful first half David Mitchell must have been furious that his side did not play their usual style of rubbish and crock, and obviously told them so, as soon after the break Perth went back to their old selves. Naum Sekulovski driving a clearance straight into Sergio Van Dijk, the rebound falling to Marcos Flores playing a great ball to Travis Dodd who layed-off for a lethal Van Dijk to smash in the equaliser.

After that little taste of what is the norm, Perth continued to return to their old ways with Sterjovski lucky to escape with only a yellow card after blatently kicking-out at Iain Fyfe. A brain snap the former Socceroo was grateful to get away with, as a red would have spoiled what was otherwise a brilliant game for the old guy.

After that wake-up call, Perth finally did what they should have been doing all season; played a quick passing, movement off the ball game. And it immediately paid dividends.

A nice movement by Perth, which should have been brought to an end (until the ball was headed back into the path of Adrian Pellegrino by an Adelaide defender) created an opportunity for a ball to be brilliantly played to Robbie Fowler on goal, showing any youngster how to finish by passing the ball to the far post.

But the entertainment was far from over! In the 73rd minute Iain Ramsey should have equalised being presented with an open net, instead showing where he was really looking when he fired over the top straight into a group of five teenage girls sitting behind the goal. His wandering eye suddenly proved costly when in the next play Cornthwaite decided it was a great idea to push a shooting Sterjovski over resulting in a blatant red card, and allowing Fowler to double his tally from the spot, once again simply passing the ball to the inside of the post.

That’s the way the match finished, with Adelaide losing sight of Brisbane Roar in the race for Number One and Perth Glory proving to themselves as much as anyone that they are capable of passing football and it does bring results. Whether they can keep it up for the rest of the season is a question in which we will have to wait and find out the answer. But tonight, ‘The Shed’ will go home happy!

Goals:

Jamie COYNE ‘6
Joseph KEENAN ‘22
Mile STERJOVSKI ‘36
Robbie FOWLER ’67 ‘77

Yellow Cards:
Naum SEKULOVSKI ‘37
Iain FYFE ‘44
Steven McGARRY ‘54
Mile STERJOVSKI ‘56

Red Cards:
Robert CORNTHWAITE ‘76

Perth Glory: 1. Tando VELAPHI (gk), 2. Josh MITCHELL 3. Jamie COYNE, 5.Jamie HARNWELL, 7.Jacob BURNS (c), 9.Robbie FOWLER, 12.Scott NEVILLE, 14.Steven McGARRY, 16. Adriano PELLEGRINO 19. Naum SEKULOVSKI, 21.Mile STERJOVSKI (Anthony SKORICH ’90+1).

Adelaide United: 1.Eugene GALEKOVIC (gk), 2.Robert CORNTHWAITE, 4.Iain FYFE (Nigel BOOGAARD ’72), 6.CASSIO, 8.Adam HUGHES, 9.Sergio VAN DIJK, 10.Marcos FLORES, 12.Paul REID (Joseph KEENAN ‘11), 13.Travis DODD (c), 17.Iain RAMSAY (Lucas PANTELIS ’81), 18.Fabian BARBIERO.

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Christian Layland
The Media Manager at Western Sydney Wanderers for four seasons and the Melbourne Victory W-League team for two, Christian is co-founder and Chief of Staff of The Football Sack and currently coaches at Wanderers Academy.