Victory outplay Perth at AAMI Park

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The Round 19 Hyundai A-League clash between Melbourne Victory and Perth Glory was an entertaining Saturday night encounter which began scrappily but developed into a spectacular occasion between two sides desperate for three points.

Kevin Muscat and Robbie Fowler commenced proceedings in excellent spirit; Fowler with expert touch around the area, distributing ball and tracking back tirelessly when required.

Archie Thompson, until he pulled his hamstring, also showed signs that he had returned to full fitness following the knee injury sustained in the most recent and certainly most grand A-League Grand Final to date. Thompson caused great trouble to Perth Glory defenders all night down the left hand side with slalom runs that ultimately proved the difference between the sides.

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The good performances were not confined to the old pros, with young Costa Rican Marvin Angulo beginning to hit his straps. Undeniably possessing quick feet and great technique, his adaptation to Australian life is no doubt beginning to take place too with a great runs and in particular one stinging, curling and dipping attempt on the half hour mark.

Perth would not take the forays lying down with Scott Neville repeatedly finding space down the vacated right flank following Matthew Kemp’s inglorious and injurious half hour contribution.

Indicative of the intensity in the match, the end of the first half was frenetic and could have provided the advantage to either camp. Perth Glory had a fantastic opportunity through Steven McGarry providing an excellent ball to Robbie Fowler.

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Fowler back heeled to Pellegrino who being flat footed missed a chance to capitalise as Michael Petkovic smothered low.

The Glory would immediately rue the miss as Asian Cup contender Robbie Kruse and former Socceroos striker Archie Thompson combined, also with back heel, to unlock the path to goal; Thompson slotting coolly but pulling a hamstring in evading the keeper.

Melbourne Vic continued to pile on the pressure after the break with an excellent shot from distance from the Ticos striker, Carlos Hernandez which made Tando Velaphi scramble to tip over the bar.

On the hour mark Melbourne Victory effectively took the match out of the Glory’s reach with the second goal from a Carlos Hernandez corner, flicked in at the near post by substitute Roddy Vargas.

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And so it finished at 2-0, the Victory continuing the Glory’s absence of form under Ian Ferguson who have taken 6 points since the Scot took over from Dave Mitchell.

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