A-League mid-season report card: Perth Glory

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You better believe it, half the 2020/21 A-League season has come and gone and it’s time for us to weigh in on Perth Glory’s performance before heading into the pointy end of the competition.

Semester summary:

Currently sitting 10th on the A-League ladder, fans have witnessed a rather touch and go season from Glory so far.

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The side has given fans some cracking victories and, on the flipside, also suffered some absolute thumpings. Nevertheless, the team has demonstrated their ability to stay in the game until the final seconds, with most games ending in either a draw or a goal difference.

Additionally, the introduction/return of notable players throughout the season including Chris Ikonomidis, Joel Chianese and Sebastian Langkamp, who is still too come, has only helped the team.

 Areas of Excellence:

Ball movement.

Stats show at this point in the season Glory have had 90 per cent of their overall possession in their own half. Proving when they do have the ball, they use it well and are able to keep it.

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While they are a little tentative to get in close-range for goal and prefer to shoot long range, the Glory have identified their teamwork is a strong skill in keeping hold of the ball.

Unfortunately Glory lacks in defence, making it hard for them to do anything with the ball when they are not in control. Should they learn to control the game from the back foot, the team may just fly up the ladder.

Areas for improvement:

Defence.

While Glory are excellent at creating pressure for their opponents in the mid-field and often find themselves regaining possession of the ball as a result, they struggle when the ball is brought in the box.

This lack of ability has led to the team conceding several goals throughout the season ultimately leading on their low ranking on the ladder.

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While coach Richard Garcia attributes this partially to the younger age of some of the side and there inexperience, it takes a full squad effort. Meaning they can not rely solely on the likes of Kosuke Ota, Andy Keogh and steady hands of Liam Reddy to save the ball between the sticks.

Top Student:

Bruno Fornaroli.

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Are we even surprised?

Fornaroli is a weapon who has contributed eight goals to the side.

His clean execution of the ball and partnership with fellow strikers Andy Keogh and Nick D’Agostino sees them not only create multiple opportunities for the team but also a strong showcasing of team work and unification for young players on the side, an aspect that Garcia has been emphasising and working towards all season.

Class Clown:

There is not one single member to pin-point Glory’s poor performance on.

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As previously mentioned, Garcia’s side is quite young and lacking in game experience when compared to other teams in the league. Unfortunately, this is only a skill that can be improved by playing more games, but time is running out for Glory to use poor games as learning curves.

Senior players such as Fornaroli and Keogh have shown crowds just how good a well-worn pair of veteran players can be on the field, so hopefully they are able to pass on some pearls of wisdom to the young guys before time runs out.

Grade: D-

Outlook:

Honestly it’s quite hard to say where Glory will end up.

Some days they put on a show and prove how strong the team can be, while other times fans are left questioning if it’s even the same side they watched the week before.

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Should Glory focus on their noted area of weakness and look to create more chances within close-range, they have show just how ruthless they can be.

However, with only five weeks remaining, the need to get cracking to get close to the coveted top six and try for the silverware this year.

Feature Image Credit: Matthew Comito

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Breanna Redhead
WA based student journalist, covering Perth Glory for the 2020/21 A-League season

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