Glory downed by reigning champions

Glory were unable to get the better of Liberty A-League champions Melbourne Victory at Macedonia Park on Sunday, with Melina Ayres scoring twice in a 3-0 win for the navy-and-whites.

View full match highlights HERE.

The Australia Under-20 striker fired her side into the lead midway through the first half after turning cleverly in the box and added a second just short of the hour-mark after the Glory defence had been unable to clear a Beattie Goad corner.

By that time, the hosts had been reduced to ten players with Sarah Cain receiving a second yellow card and Victory went on to make the game safe late in the piece when Alex Chidiac scored directly from a corner.

Glory created a number of decent opportunities themselves, however, notably a header from skipper Natasha Rigby which was cleared off the line and a second-half shot from Cyera Hintzen which flashed centimetres wide.

And Head Coach Alex Epakis was certainly full of praise for the character his charges showed in front of a 700-strong crowd.

“I want to be really clear that I’m very proud of my team,” he said.

“I’m proud of the way we went after the reigning champs.

“We didn’t want them to come here and have an easy game; we wanted to make sure that we absolutely gave it as much as we could to get a result.

“The first half, we went in 1-0 down, but I was still pretty confident we could get something out of it, then the red card happened which was disappointing and it was probably at the worst possible time.

“Where I become really proud is that when we went down, we didn’t drop tools ; we kept going at them and kept a level of togetherness.”

Having started brightly, Glory came agonisingly close to opening the scoring in the 11th minute when Rigby met a Hana Lowry corner, but her header was cleared off the line by the alert Elise Kellond-Knight.

Alana Jancevski followed that with an audacious effort from close to the halfway line which almost caught out Casey Dumont in the Victory goal and yet despite being under the pump in the early exchanges, it was the visitors who ultimately broke the deadlock.

Goad provided the ball into the box for Ayres who turned sharply and drilled a low shot past Morgan Aquino.

The key moment in the remainder of the first half proved to be the booking Cain received for a shirt tug, as 12 minutes after the restart, the midfielder brought Lia Privitelli down in the centre-circle and was given her marching orders.

Victory took advantage almost immediately, Ayres finding the net again from close-range and 15 minutes from time, they added a third when the swirling wind helped swing Chidiac’s corner into the net.

The visitors then came close to adding a fourth right at the death when substitute Ava Briedis saw her long-range shot clip the top of the crossbar.

Match Details

Liberty A-League 2022/23 Season Round 4

Perth Glory 0 Melbourne Victory 3 (Ayres 24′, 58′, Chidiac 75′)


Macedonia Park

Lara Lee

Perth Glory: 1.Morgan AQUINO (gk), 4.Natasha RIGBY (c), 7.Liz ANTON, 8.Hana LOWRY, 11.Rylee BAISDEN (9.Demi KOULIZAKIS 75′), 13.Sarah CAIN, 15.Cyera HINTZEN (12.Sofia SAKALIS 82′), 17.Abbey GREEN, 18.Sadie LAWRENCE, 21.Ella MASTRANTONIO (42.Gabriella COLEMAN 64′), 23.Alana JANCEVSKI (10.Susan PHONSONGKHAM 64′)

Substitutes not used: 20.Sarah LANGMAN (gk)

Yellow Cards: Cain

Red Cards: Cain

Melbourne Victory: 1.Casey DUMONT, 3.Claudia BUNGE, 5.Jessika NASH, 6.Beattie GOAD, 7.Gema SIMON (16.Paige ZOIS 74′), 8.Alana MURPHY (2.Tiffany ELIADIS 74′), 10.Alex CHIDIAC, 14.Melina AYRES (17.Maja MARKOVSKI 81′), 18.Kayla MORRISON, 19.Lia PRIVITELLI, 21.Elise KELLOND-KNIGHT (22.Ava BRIEDIS 81′)

Substitutes not used: 20.Miranda TEMPLEMAN (gk)

Yellow Cards: Nash, Simon

Red Cards: None