Road glory for Perth

Perth Glory has shrugged off their away hoodoo and taken full advantage of the chances presented to them in a confidence boosting 4-2 win against Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium.

Perth Glory has shrugged off their away hoodoo and taken full advantage of the chances presented to them in a confidence boosting 4-2 win against Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium.

Two goals in each half ensured Glory-s first win on the road this season in a see-sawing affair that kept supporters enthralled from whistle to whistle.

Glory had been left to lament several unlucky breaks in their previous road trips but found themselves on the other side of the ledger against a Brisbane outfit that may have been down on personnel but still full of endeavour.

“We-ve been playing well enough in a lot of games but not been rewarded,” said Glory Coach Dave Mitchell in the post-match wash-up.

“Tonight we had a bit of fortune I think and didn-t play our best football although we-ve won.

“We did ride our luck tonight but about time.

“I-ll gladly take the three points and go away and re-group,” Mitchell said.

Perth were handed the best start imaginable when an own goal from Roar defender Josh McCloughlan put Glory 1-0 up after just 45 seconds, the quickest Hyundai A-League goal this season.

Mile Sterjovski, playing in midfield as Jamie Harnwell made his first start of the season up front for Perth, sent in an inviting cross for the on rushing Harnwell and McCloughlan-s desperation header to clear deflected across goal keeper Liam Reddy and into the far corner of the net.

Perth had another great chance on the quarter hour when Branko Jelic beat the offside trap to be one-on-one with the keeper. The Serbian striker rounded Reddy and with an open goal put his shot on target but the ball was cleared off the line by a desperate late lunge from Ivan Franjic.

The home side tried to peg back Perth-s advantage by picking up the pace but were unable to find their way through a Glory defence well marshalled by Chris Coyne and Andy Todd.

As half time neared Perth saw their advantage doubled thanks to a goal created by the hard work and superb touch of midfielder Wayne Srhoj. The Glory playmaker pressuring the Roar defence into a turnover and then capitalised on his endeavour with great finesse as he lobbed the oncoming Brisbane keeper to find the back of the net.

The Roar was determined not to be silenced on their home turf and found themselves with the majority of possession in the second half.

They were back within a goal just five minutes after the restart thanks to some creative play in the box from midfielder Henrique and moments later Glory skipper Jacob Burns had to make wonderful clearing tackle as Reinaldo wound-up for a shot on goal.

Mitchell sought to get some more fluidity into their play with a tactical substitution that saw former Dutch international Victor Sikora injected into proceedings. While the feisty midfielder was not directly involved in the next goal the change in tactics proved a wonderful coaching move by Perth.

Jelic again the man on the spot as Sterjovski poked a dangerous ball across goal the goal mouth where the waiting six-yard specialist pounced to notch his fourth goal of the campaign and importantly restore Perth-s two goal advantage.

With half an hour to play there was still plenty of time from more drama and that-s exactly what was served up from both sides.

Brisbane was back within striking distance four minutes later when a deflection off Chris Coyne left Glory custodian Aleks Vrteski stranded. Vrteski had seconds before done well to deny Charlie Miller an opportunity but the resultant clearance from Perth-s defence landed at the feet of Sergio van Dijk some 15 yards out and his shot back towards goal took a wicked turn that snuck in at the near post.

If that wasn-t enough to keep everyone on the edge of their seat a final act was about to unfold that saw Perth take back their two goal cushion.

A speculative high cross from Glory midfielder Adriano Pellegrino skyrocketed into the stratosphere and the falling ball looked destined to be clutched by Reddy in the six yard box however the keeper misjudged the flight and it came off his fingertips and fell over the line.

“I don-t think we played the best football but we got the three points and I-ll take that every week,” Mitchell said.

“They put a lot of pressure on and we dropped deep and didn-t hold possession and that caused our own problems. I think our defence is magnificent and held us in good stead tonight but we rode our luck a little bit at times.

“It was important that we had a good result tonight and we take the three points gladly. It puts us in a good position and could be a springboard.

“We-re away at Newcastle now which will be a tough game as well, Branko (Culina) has them playing good football but it is one that we-ll go into with a bit of confidence,” Mitchell said.

The win moves Perth into fourth place on the Hyundai A-League ladder.

Hyundai A-League 2009/10 – Rd7
Brisbane Roar 2 (HENRIQUE 50-, Chris COYNE (OG) 64-)
Perth Glory 4 (Josh MCCLOUGHAN (OG) 2-, Wayne SRHOJ 40-, Branko JELIC 60-, Adriano PELLEGRINO 75-)
Sunday, 20 September 2009 at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Referee: Chris Beath
Assistant referees: Ashley Beecham and David Walsh
Fourth official: Alan Milliner

Crowd: 7,367

Brisbane Roar: 1. Liam REDDY (gk), 4. Craig MOORE (c), 5. Josh MCCLOUGHAN, 6. David DODD, 9. Sergio VAN DIJK, 10. Charlie MILLER, 11. REINALDO (19. Isaka CERNAK 79-),13. HENRIQUE, 16. Bob MALCOLM (14. Adam SAROTA 63-), 27. Ivan FRANJIC, 28. Calum O-CONNELL (23. Tim SMITS 87-)

Substitutes not used: 20. Griffin MCMASTER (gk)
Yellow cards: HENRIQUE 42-, David DODD 71-
Red cards: Nil

Perth Glory: 20. Aleks VRTESKI (gk), 3. Jamie COYNE, 4. Andy TODD, 5. Jamie HARNWELL (8. Victor SIKORA 59-), 6. Chris COYNE, 7. Jacob BURNS (c), 10. Wayne SRHOJ, 11. Branko JELIC (17. Todd HOWARTH 70-), 16. Adriano PELLEGRINO (12. Scott NEVILLE 85-), 19. Naum SEKULOVSKI, 21. Mile STERJOVSKI

Substitutes not used: 30. Alex PEARSON (gk)
Yellow cards: Jacob BURNS 15-, Wayne SRHOJ 66-, Andy TODD 90-+2
Red cards: Nil