Castro magic proves the difference against Phoenix

Diego Castro was Glory's match-winner in his first start since Round 6, as his composed second-half strike proved enough to secure a hard-fought 1-0 win over Wellington Phoenix.

Kenny Lowe's men climbed to fifth place on the ladder courtesy of the victory, their third at nib Stadium so far this season and it was no more than they deserved having shown the greater attacking intent throughout an arm-wrestle of a contest.

It was a very tense and cagey opening 45 minutes, with Adam Parkhouse’s strike across the face of the goal for the visitors the closest either side came to breaking the deadlock.

A tactical switch saw Andreu introduced into Glory's midfield at the start of the second half, however and the home side immediately looked more energetic and purposeful.

Jacob Italiano’s persistence down the right wing almost provided the opener for Chris Harold, but the 16-year-old's cut-back across the box was intercepted at the vital moment by Daniel Mullen.

Glory were not to be denied in the 59th minute, however, as Castro marked his return to the starting line-up with a finish laced with quality and composure.

The Spaniard took a touch to control Mitch Nichols' pinpoint cross from the right and calmly delayed his shot before slotting past Lewis Italiano to give his side the lead.

Glory dug deep and remained solid in the latter stages, with skipper Shane Lowry further pressing his Socceroos selection claims by producing another commanding display at the heart of the defence.

Other positives for the hosts included a first Hyundai A-League appearance of the season for Joel Chianese following his recovery from a cracked collar bone and the inclusion of 15-year-old defender Riley Warland on the bench.

Glory now face a quick turnaround ahead of Thursday's away clash with Brisbane Roar.


Match Details

Perth Glory 1 (Diego Castro 69') Wellington Phoenix 0

Half-time 0-0

Referee: Jared Gillett

Attendance: 7750

Perth Glory: 33. Liam REDDY (GK), 4. Shane LOWRY (c), 5. Jacob POSCOLIERO, 6. Mitch NICHOLS (7. Joel CHIANESE 70’), 14. Chris HAROLD (20. Jake BRIMMER 81’), 15. Brandon WILSON, 16. Joseph MILLS, 17. Diego CASTRO, 19. Joe KNOWLES (18. ANDREU 46’), 26. Jacob ITALIANO, 29. Jeremy WALKER

Subs not used: 13. Nick FEELY (GK), 27. Riley WARLAND

Yellow Cards: Knowles 44’, Wilson 86’, Castro 90’

Red Cards: Nil.

Wellington Phoenix: 1. Lewis ITALIANO (GK), 2. Daniel MULLEN, 3. Scott GALLOWAY, 4. Goran PARACKI, 8. Dario VIDOSIC (c) (17. Ali ABBAS 14’), 9. Andrija KALUDEROVIC, 12. Adam PARKHOUSE, 13. Marco ROSSI (11. Hamish WATSON 83’), 14. Alex RUFER, 19. Thomas DOYLE, 23. Matthew RIDENTON (18. Sarpreet SINGH 66’)

Subs not used: 30. Keegan SMITH (GK), 24. Logan ROGERSON

Yellow Cards: Nil.

Red Cards: Nil.