Joel Chianese, Bruno Fornaroli and Chris Ikonomidis were all on target as Glory reclaimed third spot on the Hyundai A-League ladder with a comprehensive 3-0 win over Adelaide United at HBF Park.
In front of a season-best crowd of 11,168, Chianese bagged his third goal in as many games to hand the hosts a 26th-minute lead and on the cusp of half-time, Fornaroli took his tally for the campaign to seven in doubling Glory’s advantage.
The scoring was completed midway through the second-half when substitute Ikonomidis bustled his way in on goal and finished impressively from an acute angle.
The victory was Glory’s fifth in a row, equalling the club’s record for consecutive Hyundai A-League wins set during the 2015-16 season and Head Coach Tony Popovic was understandably in upbeat mood following the game.
“It was a wonderful win,” he said.
“It was three goals again and a clean sheet, so we just keep moving forward and we’re very pleased overall.
“It’s been a great run, a fantastic run and we’ve had it real tough in the last month in terms of conditions.
“We’ve played three consecutive home games in the real heat and then travelling to Central Coast was difficult because of the conditions there.
“It was a very disciplined and professional performance from the players today.
“We had to withstand some pressure early on and the boys did that really well and once we scored, we always looked a threat and created numerous opportunities.
It was the visitors who began the game more brightly, George Blackwood narrowly off-target after meeting Michael Maria’s cross with a firm strike and Nikola Mileusnic also going close with a low shot which flashed its way through a crowded box.
But on 26 minutes it was Glory who broke the deadlock via a well-worked effort which was finished with aplomb by Chianese.
James Meredith made inroads down the left before picking out Diego Castro who in turn found Chianese on the edge of the box and the in-form winger turned his marker with his first touch, then found the bottom corner with his second.
Glory could have doubled their advantage moments later, Neil Kilkenny’s pinpoint pass reaching Ivan Franjic as he charged into the box, but Adelaide ‘keeper Paul Izzo was equal to the defender’s fierce shot.
The hosts were not to be denied in the final minute of the first-half, however, Castro linking up with Fornaroli on the edge of the box and the Uruguayan rifling home a shot which took a slight deflection off Adelaide skipper Michael Jakobsen.
2-0 very nearly became 3-0 early in the second half, Castro’s perfectly-timed through-ball sending Chianese in on goal, but his angled shot failed to find the target.
Adelaide responded by carving out a double-chance of their own, Liam Reddy doing well to parry Mileusnic’s first shot and Riley McGree blasting the rebound wastefully wide.
But any concerns among the home faithful that the Reds might force their way back into the contest were effectively extinguished in the 68th minute.
Alex Grant’s pinpoint long ball found Ikonomidis and he showed great strength and resilience to shrug off his marker, reach the ball ahead of the onrushing Izzo and make light of a challenging angle to calmly roll it into the empty net.
Glory continued to threaten to add to their tally right up until the final whistle, with Ikonomidis, Greg Wuthrich and Fornaroli all going close to making the hosts’ winning margin even more emphatic.
Hyundai A-League 2019/20 Season Round 14
Perth Glory 3 (Chianese 26′, Fornaroli 44′, Ikonomidis 68′)) Adelaide United 0
Referee: Alex King
Assistant Referee 1: Josh Mannella
Assistant Referee 2: Matt Southern
Fourth Official: Adam Fielding
VAR: Craig Zetter
Perth Glory: 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 2.Alex GRANT, 4.Gregory WUTHRICH, 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 7.Joel CHIANESE (19.Chris IKONOMIDIS 60′), 8.James MEREDITH (12.Kim SOO-BEOM 85′), 9.Bruno FORNAROLI, 16.Tomislav MRCELA, 17.Diego CASTRO (c), 20.Jake BRIMMER (29.Kristian POPOVIC 86′), 88.Neil KILKENNY
Substitutes not used: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 3.Jacob TRATT, 23.Dane INGHAM, 28.Gabriel POPOVIC
Yellow Cards: None
Red Cards: None
Adelaide United: 20.Paul IZZO (gk), 4.Ryan STRAIN, 5.Michaël MARIA, 7.Ryan KITTO (16.Nathan KONSTANDOPOULOS 46′), 8.Riley McGREE, 14.George BLACKWOOD (11.Kristian OPSETH 59′), 17.Nikola MILEUSNIĆ (2.Michael MARRONE 73′), 22.Michael JAKOBSEN (c), 23.Jordan ELSEY, 26.Ben HALLORAN, 27.Louis D’ARRIGO
Substitutes not used: 6.Vince LIA, 40.Dakota OCHSENHAM (gk)
Yellow Cards: None
Red Cards: None