Glory suffer late heartache in Doha

Glory v Ulsan Hyundai - team group

Perth Glory suffered late heartache in Doha on Tuesday evening as Ulsan Hyundai struck twice in the final four minutes to snatch a 2-1 victory in what was a compelling Group F clash.

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Richard Garciá’s men had been on track to secure the club’s maiden AFC Champions League win and record a major upset against one of the tournament favourites when Daniel Stynes rifled home from the edge of the box in the 71st minute.

But in the final seconds of normal time, Kim In-Sung found enough space in the box to fire the Korean outfit level and four minutes later, substitute Junior Negrao volleyed home the winner.

To emerge empty-handed from the game was a bitter pill to swallow for a youthful Glory side who had shown huge defensive resolve when under pressure in the first half before taking the initiative after the break.

And they came agonisingly close to regaining their lead seconds after losing it when Bruno Foranroli was denied by a brilliant save from Jo Suhuk.

Unsurprisingly, Garcia was full of praise for his side in his post-match interview.

“It was a fantastic performance from the group,” he said.

“They were very patient, very disciplined and played well as a team.

“They probably deserved more out of the game, but that’s the harshness of football and there were plenty of positives to work off in that performance.

“I thought we kept controlling them without the ball very well and we’ve done that in both games.

“We don’t have the fitness that they [Shanghai Shenhua and Ulsan Hyundai] have as we’re coming into our season and they’re coming off the back of their seasons, so for us it’s about trying to make sure we don’t concede and are in a good position to score.

“I was very, very pleased with the back four. 

“I feel that they’ve come on in leaps and bounds since they’ve come into the squad and a big part of that is down to the senior players in the group and how they have helped them and made them feel  part of it and responsible for the way they play.

“We’re constantly getting better and more confident within ourselves and in our bodies and are building towards where we want to be.”

While Ulsan enjoyed enjoyed plenty of possession and territory in the opening period, they failed to force Tando Velaphi into a meaningful save as a back four with an average age of just 20 dealt with everything the 2012 tournament winners had to offer.

Then, as the second half wore on, Glory grew into the game and eventually got their reward when Stynes found the back of the net.

It was a sweet moment for the Perth local whose previous spell at the club was cruelled by injury, his surging run across the top of the box followed by an angled shot which gave Suhuk no chance.

A visibly rattled Ulsan side seemed to have no answer as the final whistle loomed, but when Yun Bit-garam’s cross took a deflection off Diego Castro, it gave In-Sung the extra time he needed to bring the ball under control and bend a shot past Velaphi from 12 metres out.

It felt like a cruel blow for Glory and worse was to come when In-Sung turned provider deep into stoppage-time, crossing from the left to last season’s K-League Golden Boot winner, Negrao, who finished with aplomb.

Match Details

AFC Champions League Group F

Perth Glory 1 (Stynes 71′) Ulsan Hyundai 2 (In-Sung 89′, Negrao 90+3′)

Half-time: 0-0

Education City Stadium, Doha

Referee: Muhammad Nazmi Nasaruddin

Perth Glory: 1.Tando VELAPHI, 3.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, 7.Luke BODNAR, 9.Bruno FORNAROLI, 10.Daniel STYNES (11.Declan HUGHES 90+1′), 15.Brandon WILSON (88.Neil KILKENNY 79′), 16.Nick SULLIVAN (13.Osama MALIK 46′), 17.Diego CASTRO (C), 22.Joshua RAWLINS (5.Nicholas WALSH 67′), 23.Dane INGHAM, 27.Bryce BAFFORD (25.Carlo ARMIENTO 46′)

Substitutes not used: 4.Darryl LACHMAN, 14.Giordano COLLI, 28.Mason TATAFU, 50.Cameron COOK (GK)

Yellow Cards: Wilson, Stynes, Fornaroli

Red Cards: None

Ulsan Hyundai: 1.Jo SUHUK, 2.Jeong DONGHO, 3.Jason DAVIDSON (30.Jung HOONSUNG 76′), 4.Davy BULTHUIS, 8.Sin JIN HO (C) (6.Park JOO HO 76′) 10.Yoon BITGARAM, 11.Lee KEUNHO (9.Junior NEGRAO 60′), 19.Bjorn JOHNSEN, 44.Kim KEEHEE, 72.Lee CHUNGYONG (22.Koh MYONGJIN 60′), 98.Lee SANGHEON (7.Kim INSUNG 46′)

Substitutes not used: 5.Kim MINDUK, 17.Kim SUNG JOON, 25.Seo JUHWAN (GK),  66.Seol YOUNGWOO, 99.Park JEONGIN

Yellow Cards: Dongho, Keehee

Red Cards: None