Perth Glory Coach Dave Mitchell has lamented his sides’ lack of hunger following a 1-0 loss to North Queensland Fury in Townsville on Friday night.
Perth Glory Coach Dave Mitchell has lamented his sides- lack of hunger following a 1-0 loss to North Queensland Fury in Townsville on Friday night.
While Perth were coming off a short five day turnaround they couldn-t be excused for a first half display in which they were completely dominated by the Fury and conceded the goal that handed the points to the home side.
Glory-s second half was significantly better as they threw everything at North Queensland but despite their desperation they were unable to find an opening.
“It wasn-t good enough and simply not acceptable,” Mitchell said of the first half performance.
“We were out fought, North Queensland scrapped for everything and we didn-t fight for it which was the annoying thing.”
Mitchell had flagged the encounter as a danger game for Perth with the Fury coming off a hiding from Sydney a week earlier. The Glory mentor was spot on as a desperate North Queensland outfit attacked relentlessly in the opening 45 minutes.
The stats at the break told the story with the home side hogging 62% of possession, winning nine corners to nil and having 15 shots on goal, including eight on target, to Glory-s one.
With that type of dominance it was only a matter of time before Perth-s overworked defence cracked and the killer blow was delivered by and an unlikely source when David Williams headed home his first Hyundai A-League goal.
Williams finding some space after yet another corner for the home side and after two attempts managed to hit the back of the net. Glory custodian Tando Velaphi brilliantly blocking the initial effort but the rebound fell perfectly back to Williams who headed home from point blank range.
The Fury had numerous other chances in the opening half, Perth midfielder Adriano Pellegrino forced to clear Matt Smith-s shot off the line after 41 minutes while Fury marquee Robbie Fowler muffed a first touch at the top of the box a minute later with plenty of space to shoot.
An ear bashing from Mitchell at half time had the desired effect and his troops looked more dangerous in the second stanza. The best of their chances coming after Glory changed shape and introduced fresh legs in the form of Jamie Harnwell, Jimmy Downey and Andrija Jukic.
Harnwell slotted in up front and looked most likely to deliver the goal the visitors were searching for. A well weighted cross from Downey allowing Harnwell to rise high and get a powerful header on target but Fury ‘keeper Justin Pasfield was up to the task and took it cleanly.
It became a case of ‘so near but so far- as Pellegrino hit the side netting, Victor Sikora skimmed a shot through a crowded box only to have Pasfield scoop it from the turf while Jamie Coyne saw his header cleared off the line with just minutes remaining.
Perth had one final opportunity to take something from the game but youngsters Scott Neville and Jukic were unable to get a piece of a well flighted corner on target and the referee blew for full time as the ball was cleared from the danger zone.
“We-re a good side and can play good football but the desire has to be there as well and I didn-t see enough of that tonight,” Mitchell said.
“Credit to North Queensland, they put us under a lot of pressure and made it tough but I think they just wanted it a bit more than us and that-s hurting.
The Glory returns to Perth to prepare for another long road trip back to Queensland for a clash against Gold Coast on Sunday 20 December.
Hyundai A-League 2009/10: Rd 18
North Queensland Fury 1 (David WILLIAMS 33-)
Perth Glory 0
Friday, 11 December 2009 at Dairy Farmers Stadium, Townsville
Referee: Peter Green
North Queensland Fury: 20.Justin PASFIELD (GK), 2.Robbie MIDDLEBY (7.Jason SPAGNUOLO 72-), 3.Chris TADROSSE, 9.Robbie FOWLER (c) (27.Terry COOKE 63-), 10.Jeremy BROCKIE (24.Dyron DAAL 68-), 11.David WILLIAMS, 14.Chris GROSSMAN, 16.Paul KOHLER, 19.Daniel MCBREEN, 23.Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 26.Matt SMITH,
Substitutes not used: 1.Paul HENDERSON (GK)
Yellow Cards: Paul Kohler 64-, Rostyn Griffiths 82-, Justin Pasfield 90+3-
Perth Glory: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 3.Jamie COYNE, 4.Andy TODD, 7.Jacob BURNS (c), 8.Victor SIKORA (23.Andrija JUKIC 79-), 10.Wayne SRHOJ (2.Jimmy DOWNEY 64-), 12.Scott NEVILLE, 16.Adriano PELLEGRINO, 17.Todd HOWARTH, 19.Naum SEKULOVSKI (5.Jamie HARNWELL 65-), 21.Mile STERJOVSKI
Substitutes not used: 20.Aleks VRTESKI (gk)
Yellow Cards: Andy Todd 52-, Jamie Coyne 66-