“Maybe the A-League can put a few smiles on people’s faces” – Popa


Tony Popovic is hoping that Glory’s game against Western United on Monday night will provide at least a brief respite for football fans around the state and across the country.


The game will take place behind closed doors at HBF Park (kick-off at 6.30pm) due to restrictions that have been put in place to combat the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

But even though the club’s members and fans will unfortunately not be able to attend in person, the Head Coach is hoping that watching the team in action may still lift their spirits.

“Maybe the A-League can put a few smiles on people’s faces,” he said.

“During the 90 minutes while they’re watching on TV, they may forget some tough times and if we can contribute to that by showing some good quality football, so be it.”

Popovic went on to confirm that the players are keen to return to action following last weekend’s draw with ladder leaders Sydney FC and that their welfare remains his number one priority.

“It’s an unprecedented time and an extremely unique situation that is an issue worldwide and we can’t deny that players have their concerns, as we all have, for friends and family,” he said.

“We know that the fixture (on Monday) is going ahead. We know that it’s a very fluid situation that can change at any time, but our game at the moment is on Monday and we’ll train today and prepare accordingly.

“I believe that the players, amongst the concern that they have, also love the game and if there’s a chance we can play, they want to play, obviously in a safe manner.

“We’ve had our discussions internally together and we can only control what we can.

“The World Health Organisation has given guidelines to everyone, we have our own medical staff that have given guidelines and we are adhering to those.

“We’re following them very closely and the club is leading the way in terms of supporting the group; that’s all we can do. 

“I trust the players and they have my ultimate respect and if any one of them individually said that they were not comfortable to train or play, they’d be supported by the club.

“They could stay at home and we would certainly understand and respect that.

“But what we’ve seen so far is that the group is very focused and determined and I can only judge what I see.

“They want to do what they love doing and that is play football and they want to continue that for as long as that’s possible.”

The Head Coach also threw his support behind the proposed condensing of fixtures in a bid to ensure successful completion of the Hyundai A-League season.

“We’ve got six games remaining,” he said.

“We did initially have four matches at home, now we have three.

“We play on Monday night and then on Thursday night here [in Perth] against Central Coast.

“Then we have three games in Sydney and finish off with Melbourne Victory here at home.

“Yes, we would have liked to have had the four games at home, but we understand that these circumstances are unique and we have to respect what Wellington and Melbourne Victory have gone through and try and make this work.

“If there is a way of making this work and finishing off the season, well, we’re all trying to do that.”