They’re Perth Glory, but not as you know them

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Whatever preconceptions you had of the Glory before round one, you can throw them out the window.

This is a Perth Glory with new players, a new formation and a new manager who knows that good things come to those who wait.

““We’ve changed a lot of things in terms of personnel, the playing style, the structure of what we want to play,” Popovic said in the wake of his side’s 1-1 draw with the Western Sydney Wanderers.

“There’s a lot we want to do at the club, and all of that takes time.”

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It took little time at all however for Popovic’s new formation to start bearing fruit.

Playing in a 3-4-3 the Glory controlled the first half, getting the opening goal and looking dangerous going forward while uncharacteristically rigid down back.

Defensive stability has never been a hallmark of Perth’s game but with the major defensive reinforcements brought in over the off-season to complement the new formation, it could be something we grow to expect.

Pencilled into that 3-4-3 formation were five debutants: Jason Davidson, Ivan Franjic, Tomislav Mrcela, Juande and Fabio Ferreira, with Chris Ikonomidis becoming the sixth off the bench in the second half.

With such extensive changes there were always going to be growing pains and that was evident as Perth’s solid start came undone by the end of the game. An array of missed chances from both sides meant the Glory’s one point could just as easily been three, or none at all.

“We weren’t really moving the ball with the speed that we were in the first half,” explained Popovic.

“We got a little bit cautious. We started playing a little bit, I’d say, safe maybe.”

Once losing the lead, the Glory huffed and puffed at the Wanderers door but failed to blow their house down.

Despite his side failing to capitalise on their winning position, Popovic remained upbeat: calling on the Glory faithful to be patient as their side grows into something they’ve not seen before.

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“We are pleased with the performance for round one at home in front of our fans,” he said.

“I think we can send them home optimistic of what is possible, and we hope they look forward to the next home game against Brisbane.”

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Matthew Comito
Matthew Comito
Football nut, student journalist and firm believer that Berisha dived in the 2012 A-League Grand Final. Covering Perth Glory for the 2018/19 season.

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