A first-half goal from Robbie Kruse proved enough to consign Glory to their first away defeat of the season as they were edged out 1-0 by Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park.
The Socceroos winger struck just after the half-hour mark and although the visitors piled on the pressure in the second half, striking the woodwork twice through Bruno Fornaroli and Alex Grant, they were unable to find a way through.
As they have so often this season, Glory dominated possession for long periods, completing more than twice as many passes as the navy-and-whites.
Tony Popovic’s men also created a string of chances, with Gregory Wuthrich and Neil Kilkenny among those kept at bay by ‘keeper Lawrence Thomas as a total of 11 shots rained in on the Victory goal.
The first goalmouth action of a lively first half came in the 12th minute when a swift Victory counter-attack culminated in Ola Toivonen firing in a shot which Liam Reddy saved comfortably to his left.
Glory responded moments later via Kilkenny who bent a first-time effort from the edge of the box narrowly over the bar and the midfielder then created a chance for Grant who nodded his corner just off target.
As the chances continued to flow, Andrew Nabbout’s mis-hit cross threatened to creep into the top corner until Reddy produced a fine save to tip the ball over and from the resulting corner, the former Newcastle man went close again, this time with a powerful glancing header.
Victory were not to be denied in the 32nd minute, however, as Adama Traore’s low cross eluded everyone except Nabbout who returned the ball across the six-yard box where Kruse applied a tap-in finish.
The second half began with Glory in purposeful mood and the men in white came agonisingly close to making it 1-1 five minutes in when Ivan Franjic’s low cross found Fornaroli in a pocket of space and his fierce effort cannoned against the frame of the goal.
A series of goalmouth scrambles ensued as the visitors continued to crank up the pressure, with Fornaroli going close to grabbing his second before Grant headed a superb Kilkenny cross against the bar.
Victory found themselves penned into their own half for long periods, although they did occasionally threaten on the break and Reddy was called into action to foil Nabbout at point-blank range in the 65th minute.
Normal service was then resumed as play switched back to the other end where Kilkenny’s low drive drew a save from Thomas and the home ‘keeper was equal to a Fornaroli header as the game moved into its final five minutes.
Right at the death Glory went close again, this time Thomas rushing from his line to save bravely at the feet of Wuthrich as the Swiss defender prepared to pull the trigger following a surging run into the box.
Melbourne Victory 1 (Kruse 32′) Perth Glory 0
AAMI Park, Melbourne
Referee: Alex King
Assistant Referee 1: Wilson Brown
Assistant Referee 2: Andrew Meimarakis
Fourth Official: Adam Bavcar
VAR: Kris Griffiths-Jones
Melbourne Victory: 0.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 4.James DONACHIE, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 8.Jakob POULSEN, 9.Andrew NABBOUT (3.Corey BROWN 90+2′), 10.Robbie KRUSE (7.Kenny ATHIU 88′), 11.Ola TOIVONEN (c), 17.Elvis KAMSOBA, 18.Migjen BASHA, 21.Adama TRAORE, 24.Anthony LESIOTIS
Substitutes not used: 16.Josh HOPE, 19.Ben CARRIGAN, 50.Brendan WHITE (gk)
Yellow Cards: Toivonen
Red Cards: None
Perth Glory: 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 2.Alex GRANT, 4.Gregory WUTHRICH, 5.Ivan FRANJIC (12.Kim SOO-BEOM 57′), 8.James MEREDITH, 9.Bruno FORNAROLI, 17.Diego CASTRO (c), 19.Chris IKONOMIDIS, 27.JUANDE (7.Joel CHIANESE 78′), 29.Kristian POPOVIC (20.Jake BRIMMER 65′), 88.Neil KILKENNY
Substitutes not used: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 6.Dino DJULBIC, 14.Chris HAROLD
Yellow Cards: Meredith, Ikonomidis, Castro
Red Cards: None