A stunning strike from Joel Chianese was not enough to prevent Glory suffering a second home defeat of the season as they were downed 3-1 by Wellington Phoenix on Sunday evening.
In front of a season-high crowd of 9229 at HBF Park, the hosts dominated the first half but were unable to translate that superiority onto the scoreboard and Phoenix duly made them pay after the break.
Ben Waine put Ufuk Talay’s side 1-0 up just short of the hour-mark before Chianese beat two men on the edge of the box and picked out the top corner in spectacular style to restore parity almost immediately.
Louis Fenton soon restored Phoenix’s lead, however and Jaushua Sotirio’s emphatic finish 15 minutes from time effectively sealed his side’s victory.
Glory Head Coach Richard Garcia was understandably disappointed by his side’s failure to make the most of their dominance in terms of both possession and territory.
“It was very similar to the game we played against them away,” he said.
“We dominated possession and then got caught on the counter.
“We were very positive in the first half, we had lots of entries into their box and chances.
“We spoke at half time about being secure when we didn’t have the possession and not getting caught on the counter-attack… and we got caught on the counter-attack.
“That’s something we need to continue to learn and grow on.
“There’s still plenty of football to be played, albeit in a condensed period and it’s about us now brushing this off, growing another leg and finding that confidence.
“At the moment, we’re dominating games but not getting results through a lack of concentration and that’s something we have to learn from and help the guys come to the party with.”
It was Chris Ikonomidis, making his first start for the club in over 14 months, who created Glory’s opening chance in the sixth minute, delivering a deep cross which Carlo Armiento volleyed narrowly wide.
And after Phoenix dangerman Ulises Davila had sent a cheeky chipped effort just off target at the other end, Glory threatened again, this time via an intricate passing move started by Neil Kilkenny which culminated in Armiento forcing a smart save from Sail.
A similarly flowing attack midway through the half saw Armiento create a chance for Bruno Fornaroli and only the outstretched leg of Sail prevented the Uruguayan from opening the scoring.
Davila and Sotirio then both went close for Phoenix as the chances continued to flow, with the final action of the first half a fizzing shot from Fornaroli which was deflected centimetres wide of the post.
Having finished the first half on the back foot, Wellington began the second firmly on the front, Cameron Devlin striking the post before Waine went one better.
Sotirio was sent clear on goal and although Liam Reddy did well to block the midfielder’s initial effort with his legs, Waine followed up to sweep the loose ball into an unguarded net.
Glory’s response was instant, Chianese picking up possession just outside the box, showing quick feet to wriggle past Davila and Clayton Lewis and then thumping an unstoppable drive past Sail.
That was as good as it got for the hosts, however, as Fenton soon restored his side’s lead by ramming home the loose ball after Reddy had parried Davila’s low shot and the lively Sotirio then burst through on goal and found the roof of the net.
Perth Glory 1 (Chianese 58′) Wellington Phoenix 3 (Waine 56′, Fenton 66′, Sotirio 75′)
HBF Park, Perth
Referee: Daniel Elder
Perth Glory: 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 2.Jason GERIA, 6.Osama MALIK (19.Callum TIMMINS 60′), 7.Chris IKONOMIDIS (11.Joel CHIANESE 46′), 8.Kosuke OTA, 9.Bruno FORNAROLI, 10.Andy KEOGH (38.Ciaran BRAMWELL 74′), 20.Carlo ARMIENTO (17.Diego CASTRO 60′), 29.Darryl LACHMAN, 37.Riley WARLAND, 88.Neil KILKENNY
Substitutes not used: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 5.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, 22.Josh RAWLINS
Yellow Cards: Geria
Red Cards: None
Wellington Phoenix: 20.Oliver SAIL (GK), 6.Tim PAYNE, 8.Cameron DEVLIN, 9.David BALL, 10.Ulises DAVILA (14.Alex RUFER 90+2′), 11.Jaushua SOTIRIO (21.Joshua LAWS 90+4′), 16.Louis FENTON, 18.Ben WAINE (5.James MCGARRY 89′), 19.Sam SUTTON, 23.Clayton LEWIS, 27.Steven TAYLOR
Substitutes not used: 1.Stefan MARINOVIC (gk), 12.Matthew RIDENTON, 13.Charles LOKOLI-NGOY, 15.Mirza MURATOVIC
Yellow Cards: Lewis, Payne
Red Cards: None