Victory rue missed chances in Glory draw

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Melbourne Victory have wasted the chance to jump back to second on the A-League table after they dropped two points against Perth Glory.

In a cagey and messy opening to the game Victory did settle the quicker of the two sides with early chances going their way.

James Troisi was effective in the heart of midfield, pulling the strings to create some attacking play for the home side.

Melbourne would’ve opened the scoring had Marco Rojas kept onside before sliding the ball to Besart Berisha for the tap in.

Fahid Ben Khalfallah was in the thick of it for the Victory as he looked dangerous down the left flank, giving Perth’s Brandon Wilson headaches.

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But for all their dominance Melbourne found themselves down in the 17th minute.

Glory’s Nebojsa Marinkovic picked the ball up in the heart of the park and with a magical ball played in Chris Harold on the left flank.

From there Harold breezed passed Leigh Broxham and cut the ball back to the awaiting Andy Keogh at the top of the box who smashed the ball passed Lawrence Thomas into the top corner for his seventh goal of the campaign.

With the crowd restless at the 1-0 scoreline the Victory pushed for an equalizer.

Berisha, Troisi and Ben Khalfallah all had chances to equalize but failed to deliver the final finish.

Kevin Muscat would’ve thought his side wasn’t going to score when Liam Reddy tipped Rojas’s left footed curler onto the upright.

But the Victory manager didn’t have to wait too much longer for the equalizer.

In the 41st minute Berisha, after Dino Djulbic failed to clear Ben Khalfallah’s cross, found himself four yards out and smashed the ball into the back of the net.

Both sides went into the break all-square, but it was the Victory who came out firing in the second half.

Ben Khalfallah, relishing being in the starting line up, squandered two early chances to take the lead, shooting just wide of the upright and failing to get a touch off of Rojas’s cross.

Perth was struggling to get out of their own half as a rampant Victory piled on the pressure with wave after wave.

Ben Khalfallah thought he had scored when his effort was cleared off the line by Wilson in the 69th minute and Berisha not long after that headed wide.

Jai Ingham was brought on for some extra pace for the Victory to try and get the go ahead goal and he nearly did that after his shot from Troisi’s cross just missed the target.

Victory pressed until the final minute and still weren’t able to break the deadlock.

Troisi was unlucky not to have grabbed the winner in the 93rd minute when his chest and volley hit the upright.

But a winner was not on the cards as boos rang out from the 16,017 crowd at AAMI Park as Chris Beath blew the final whistle signaling two points missed for the home side, which could be crucial as the season progresses.


Melbourne Victory
1 (41’ Berisha)
Newcastle Jets 1 (17’ Keogh)

Referee: Chris Beath
Assistant Referees: James Tesoriero and Wilson Brown
Fourth Official: Jonathan Barreiro

AAMI Park
Attendance: 16,017

Melbourne Victory: 20. THOMAS Lawrence (GK), 2. GERIA Jason, 15. BARO Alan, 17. DONACHIE James, 6. BROXHAM Leigh, 13 BOZANIC Oliver (73’), 21. VALERI Carl (C), 10. TROISI James, 14. BEN KHALFALLH Fahid (76’), 7 ROJAS Marco (87’), 8. BERISHA Besart.
Substitutes: 9. BEISTER Maximilian (87’), 16. MAHAZI Rashid (73’), 4. ANSELL Nicholas, 5. GEORGIEVKSI Daniel, 40. ACTON Matthew (GK), 23 INGHAM Jai (76’).

Newcastle Jets: 33. REDDY Liam (GK), 15. WILSON Brandon (87’), 6. DJULBIC Dino, 4. LOWRY Shane, 16. MILLS Joseph (29’), 14. HAROLD Chris, 24. SMILJANIC Milan, 8. GRIFFITHS Rostyn (C), 10. MARINKOVIC Nebojsa, 9. KEOGH Andrew, 23. PETRATOS Kosta
Substitutes: 3. WARREN Marc (29’), 13. FEELY Nicholas (GK), 18. OXBORROW Mitchell (87’), 21. REINERS Jamal, 22. TAGGART Adam

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Alexander Hatzikostas
Passionate Football writer, commentator, but most importantly fan.