Glory clinch thrilling comeback win


Glory restored their six-point lead at the top of the Hyundai A-League in dramatic style on Sunday, launching a stunning comeback to secure a thrilling 4-3 win over Western Sydney Wanderers at nib Stadium.


Tony Popovic’s men trailed 2-0 and then 3-1 with just 14  minutes left, but Ivan Franjic’s header, a close-range finish from Andy Keogh and Juande’s penalty steered the hosts to a tenth win of the campaign and extended their unbeaten home run against Wanderers to eight games.

Earlier, goals either side of the break from Kwame Yeboah and Roly Bonevacia had put the visitors two up and even when substitute Diego Castro halved the arrears, any hopes of a home comeback appeared to have been dashed when Abraham Majok capped a rapid breakaway by making it 3-1.

Glory were far from done, however, pulling one back through Ivan Franjic who headed home after Alex Grant’s shot had rebounded down off the bar.

Franjic then turned provider to tee up Keogh for the leveller and the winner arrived five minutes from time when Keogh was impeded in the box and Juande slammed home from the spot.

Unsurprisingly, Popovic was delighted with the character his charges showed to overturn a two-goal deficit for the second time in their last three outings.

“It was a crazy sort of game,” he said.

“We created an amazing opportunity in the first couple of minutes and we didn’t take it.

“They’ve [Wanderers] been very dangerous all year and are a very dynamic team, but we defended very poorly today, so it was no real surprise that we struggled at times.

“But what can you say about the character of the boys? You’re down 3-1 in the 77th minute at home and you win 4-3. It’s quite special.

“I’m just delighted for everyone involved and I’m sure it’s a night that the fans will remember.”

Glory began brightly, Keogh heading a Scott Neville cross uncharacteristically wide after just five minutes and Juande then stinging the palms of Wanderers’ ‘keeper Nicholas Suman with a well-struck effort from just outside the box.

Having weathered that early storm, however, the visitors began to force their way into the game, with Liam Reddy forced to produce two fine saves to keep the lively Yeboah at bay.

And their pressure paid off six minutes before the break when Nick Fitzgerald’s corner eventually found its way to Yeboah who bundled home his first goal of the season despite the best efforts of Tomislav Mrcela to clear the ball off the line.

Suman got down well to save at his near post from Franjic as Glory looked to respond after the break, but instead it was Markus Babbel’s men who found the net via a rapid counter-attack.

Substitute Majok made ground down the left before releasing Yeboah and he squared the ball into the path of the onrushing Bonavcia who swept it past Reddy.

To their credit, Glory hit back almost immediately, Castro converting from close-range after Neville’s initial shot had been parried by Suman.

The game then swung back in Wanderers’ favour when Yeboah led another swift counter-attack and laid the ball off for Majok to find the net.

But from there on it was all Glory as Franjic pounced to bag his first goal for the club, Keogh slid home the third to take his tally for the season to eight and two minutes later, Juande’s penalty capped a truly stunning comeback that will surely live long in the memory of the Glory faithful.

Match Details

Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Season Round 13

Perth Glory 4 (Castro 71′, Franjic 79′, Keogh 83′, Juande (pen) 85′ ) Western Sydney Wanderers FC 3 (Yeboah 39′, Bonevacia 67′, Majok 77′)

Half-time: 0-1

Attendance: 8945

Referee: Kurt Ams

Perth Glory: 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 2.Alex GRANT, 4.Shane LOWRY (3.Jason DAVIDSON 46′), 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 7.Joel CHIANESE (17.Diego CASTRO 46′), 9.Andy KEOGH, 16.Tomislav MRCELA, 20.Jake BRIMMER, 22.Fabio FERREIRA (11.Brendon SANTALAB 81′), 23.Scott NEVILLE, 27.JUANDE

Substitutes not used: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 88.Neil KILKENNY

Yellow cards: Brimmer, Santalab

Red cards: Nil

Western Sydney Wanderers: 40.Nicholas SUMAN (gk), 5.Brendan HAMILL (c), 7.Nick FITZGERALD (22.Rashid MAHAZI  62′), 8.Jordan O’DOHERTY (49.Abraham MAJOK 18′), 11.Bruce KAMAU, 13.Tass MOURDOUKOUTAS,  17.Keanu BACCUS, 21.Tarek ELRICH, 27.Kwame YEBOAH (16.Jaushua SOTIRIO 87′), 28.Roly BONEVACIA, 33.Tate RUSSELL

Substitutes not used: 14.Mathieu CORDIER, 20.Vedran JANJETOVIC (gk)

Yellow cards: Baccus, Mourdoukoutas

Red cards: Nil