Payback time in Perth

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Perth Glory’s 1-0 win over Brisbane Roar in the big Grand Final replay at Patersons Stadium yesterday went a long way to ease the pain of those at the club following the controversial show piece game back in April.
Goal scoring hero Billy Mehmet was understandably delighted to come off the bench and net the winner, and spoke of “payback” when asked afterwards what it meant to him.

“To get the winning goal on the opening day of the season is brilliant but obviously the main thing was to get the three points and to get a little bit of payback, which I’m sure we’ve done now,” he said.

“After the disappointment of last year, to go and get the three points in the first game of the season was brilliant for us.”

Glory boss Ian Ferguson was a bit more reluctant to be drawn into a discussion on the subject of revenge, preferring to focus on the game as a standalone victory.

“People will talk about revenge but it’s revenge when you’ve got the cup in your hand,” he said.

“This was for three points today.”

Brisbane fans travelled to Perth in numbers
Roar boss Rado Vidosic must have been watching a different game to the rest of us, claiming afterwards that his side dominated for three quarters of the contest.
Playmakers Mitch Nichols and Thomas Broich were off colour throughout, while the marauding runs of Ivan Franjic were noticeably missing from full back.
Indeed, the absence of Franjic meant Scott Jamieson was able to push forward a lot more than you would normally expect from an opposition full back against Roar, and it was his cross that set up the winner for Mehmet.
Glory created the better chances throughout, with Liam Miller dictating play at every opportunity and Jacob Burns putting in a typically tenacious display to pick up three points from Fox Sports in the Alex Tobin Medal.
A strong crowd of 14,085 got behind their team from the outset and, as expected, voiced their anger towards Grand Final villain Besart Berisha at every opportunity.
Before the game a plane flew over Patersons Stadium with a banner reading “Diving classes: Call 1300 GO ROAR”, hired at a cost of just over $1000 by Glory supporters.

Indeed, even long after the final whistle, Berisha couldn’t escape chants of “Diver” as he boarded the team bus to leave the ground.
With the league still trying to forge natural rivalries, the Glory/Roar incarnation looks like it could be here to stay.

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Neil Sherwin
Neil has covered the Perth Glory and the Hyundai A-League for five years and is one of Western Australia's most knowledgeable football journalists.

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