Taggart sets new club record, but Glory slip to home defeat

Skipper Adam Taggart set a new all-time Glory A-League season record by scoring twice, but his efforts could not prevent Western United from running out 4-3 winners at HBF Park on Sunday.

View full match highlights HERE

View Alen Stajcic’s post-match media conference HERE

In what was Glory’s final home game of the season, the 30-year-old cancelled out Matt Grimaldi’s early goal for the visitors and then fired his side in front two minutes into the second half.

That well-taken brace took Taggart’s tally for the season to 19, two more than the previous record-holder, Shane Smeltz, managed in 2011/12 and also saw him replace Bruno Fornaroli at the top of the A-League Golden Boot standings.

Glory were unable to hang on to their lead, however, as Riku Danzaki and substitutes Abel Walatee and Oliver Lavale all struck after the hour-mark, before David Williams claimed a late consolation with what was his 50th career goal.

The tone was set for a helter-skelter encounter right from the off as Lachie Wales slipped the ball through to Grimaldi and he dinked a shot over the advancing Oli Sail to give United a fourth-minute lead.

Glory were level midway through the half, however, Johnny Koutroumbis supplying a pinpoint cross from the right and Taggart powering home an unstoppable header.

The chances continued to flow as the half wore on, Thomas Heward-Belle in the United goal saving well from Stefan Colakovski, before Danzaki squandered a one-on-one opportunity at the other end.

Almost inevitably, the third goal of the game arrived shortly after the restart, Colakovski forcing a mistake from Tomoki Imai and Taggart sweeping in the loose ball to make it 2-1.

Williams thought he had made it 3-1 soon after, but his effort was ruled out for an apparent foul in the build-up and that decision was to prove pivotal.

Less than two minutes later, Danzaki fizzed a low shot from just outside the box into the bottom corner and Walatee then found space in the left channel and rifled home his first A-League goal.

Aleks Susnjar was twice denied by Heward-Belle as Glory attempted to stage another grandstand finish, but instead, a defensive mix-up allowed Lavale to make it 4-2.

With the game lost, the men in purple did at least manage to have the final word as Trent Ostler sent Williams in on goal and he applied a typically emphatic finish to reach yet another milestone in his illustrious career.

And there was another positive for Glory in the final moments as 18-year-old forward Khoa Ngo became the latest PGFC Academy product to make his senior debut.

Match Details

Isuzu UTE A-League 2023/24 Season Round 25

Perth Glory 3 (Taggart 23′, 47′. Williams 90+4′) Western United 4
(Grimaldi 4′, Danzaki 65′, Walatee 74′, Lavale 90+3′)

Half-time: 1-1

HBF Park

Sunday 21 April 2024

Referee: Shane Skinner

Attendance: 4651

Perth Glory: 1.Oli SAIL (gk), 2.Johnny KOUTROUMBIS (16.Josh RAWLINS 80′), 7.Stefan COLAKOVSKI (9.David WILLIAMS 62′), 8.Mustafa AMINI (3.Jacob MUIR 80′), 15.Aleksandar SUSNJAR, 17.Jarrod CARLUCCIO (19.Trent OSTLER 80′), 20.Giordano COLLI, 22.Adam TAGGART (co-c), 23.Daniel BENNIE (36.Khoa NGO 85′), 28.Kaelan MAJEKODUNMI, 29.Darryl LACHMAN

Substitutes not used: 30.Robert COOK (gk), 34.Andriano LEBIB

Yellow Cards: Colli

Red Cards: None

Western United: 1. Tom HEWARD-BELLE (gk), 4. James DONACHIE, 6. Tomoki IMAI, 8. Lachie WALES (41. Oliver LAVALE 88′), 9. Michael RUHS (45. Abel WALATEE 67′), 10. Steven LUSTICA (21. Sebastian PASQUALI 58′), 17. Ben GARUCCIO, 29. Charbel SHAMOON, 32. Angus THURGATE, 39. Matthew GRIMALDI (49. Jake NAJDOVSKI 67′), 77. Riku DANZAKI

Substitutes not used: 24. Connor O’TOOLE, 33. Matt SUTTON (gk), 36. Zach LISOLAJSKI

Yellow Cards: Lustica, Grimaldi, Pasquali

Red Cards: None