Who will stand up in Castro’s absence?

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Perth Glory will be without superstars Diego Castro, Josh Risdon and Rhys Williams for the away trip to AAMI Park to play Melbourne Victory this Friday night.

The biggest issue for Perth out of the three big omissions is finding the firepower to fill the void left by the mercurial Spaniard Castro.

 

Having dropped to fifth in the league after losing away to Central Coast Mariners in Round 8 the Glory appear to be at a mini crossroads.

Inconsistency has been the major theme for the Glory this campaign and it was further on show on last Thursday night as they were easily dispatched 2-0 by a Mariners side who hadn’t won at home in 11 months.

Castro was substituted clutching his hamstring in the 16th minute of the match and was replaced by the returning Adam Taggart, but Perth still lacked their usual creativity up front.

With Castro out of the team the attacking burden falls on Taggart and Chris Harold.

There are still question marks over Taggart’s fitness and his ability to run out the full 90 minutes against Melbourne Victory remains to be seen.

What the ex-Newcastle Jets man will provide is tenacity and pressure on the opposition defence as well as added goal scoring touch in and around the penalty box.

Harold on the other hand can use Castro’s absence to kick start his season.

The winger was one of the Glory’s best performers against Central Coast and linked up superbly with Irishman Andy Keogh, but was unable to score his first goal or add to his single assist for the season.

Keogh has continued his solid form from last year bagging six goals in eight starts so far and sits just one behind Melbourne City skipper Bruno Fornaroli in the golden boot competition.

Unlike Keogh, Harold has found it tough to replicate his form from last campaign.

According to OptaData, the ex-Gold Coast United man has only completed two successful crosses this season which illustrates the little impact he is having on matches.

Scoring wasn’t a major issue for the winger last season as he was able to find the back of the net on nine occasions, however zero goals in eight starts this campaign suggests there is a real lack of confidence in front of goal.

Perth Glory are in desperate need of players willing to stand up and deliver in the absence of their most potent creative player.

If Taggart can build on the two goals scored in Round 1 and  Harold can rediscover last season’s goal scoring touch, the worries about having no Castro will surely disappear.

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Stewart Marshall
Football lover so feeling lucky to be following Perth Glory for season 16/17.

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