The PGFC Academy team will feature in next week’s NPL Night Series semi-finals after producing a polished all-round team performance to beat Armadale 5-1 at Dalmatinac Park on Saturday.
A first-half brace from Charlie Leech and another goal from recent signing Carlo Armiento gave Richard Garcia’s side a comfortable lead at the break, before second-half strikes from Ciaran Bramwell and Giordano Colli wrapped up the win.
Armadale finished the game with ten men after Friday Zico was sent off, but they did muster a late consolation goal through Peter Jacobs.
Unsurprisingly, Garcia was pleased with what he saw from his young charges.
“It was a good performance from the boys tonight, another step in the right direction as far as performance is concerned and we head to the semi-finals,” he said.
“We took our chances well tonight and I thought some of our approach work was outstanding and our defending was the best it has been this year.
“That is pleasing because we’ve worked hard on that aspect of our game in training.
“It sets up a semi-final game up against Perth SC and another good challenge for our young men versus the champions from last season.”
The Glory youngsters made a perfect start, taking the lead after only five minutes.
A ball over the top sent Bramwell racing clear and he beat the ‘keeper to the ball before unselfishly squaring for Leech who fired into an empty net.
1-0 became 2-0 five minutes later, a quick break culminating in Armiento finishing clinically past Blake Henshall.
Glory duly added a third on 16 minutes, Leech again getting in behind a static Armadale defence and lobbing the onrushing ‘keeper.
It went from bad to worse for Armadale when Zico was sent off by referee Shane Skinner on the half hour and Glory continued to dominate after half time.
It therefore came as no surprise when they added a fourth on the hour-mark as Josh Rawlins’ free-kick from wide out on the right found Bramwell and he lost his marker to score.
It was 5-0 on 72 minutes, Rawlins finding space down the right, cutting inside and sliding the ball neatly to Colli who finished into the bottom corner of the net.
Armadale’s late consolation through Jacobs did little to take the gloss off Glory’s performance, which midfielder Giordano Colli felt was an impressive one.
“Obviously we knew we were playing for a spot in the semi-final,” he said, “so right from the get-go we set the tone of the match with high intensity and quick ball movement and raced to a 3-0 lead,” he said.
“Scoring another couple in the second half was important, but we were all disappointed that we conceded the goal late.
“Overall, though, it was a great performance from the boys and we looked very dominant ahead of the clash against Perth next.”
Glory’s last-four clash with Perth SC will take place at Bayswater City’s Frank Drago Reserve on Saturday 29 February (kick-off time 5pm).