A steering header by Andy Keogh in the 32nd minute and a rifling shot into the top left hand corner by super-sub Jamie Maclaren in the 86th minute, earned Perth Glory FC three vital points in its opening Hyundai A-League fixture over Wellington Phoenix in New Zealand.
Both teams had separate spells of controlling the tempo but Perth Glory FC was forced to contain a determined Phoenix in the first half which nearly saw the host’s new signings Roly Bonevacia and Nathan Burns on the scorers sheet. Glory was in real danger conceding a goal in the 29th minute when Burns found himself one-on-one against Perth custodian Daniel Vukovic who denied Burns' shot with a desperate leaning lunge to deflect the ball wide.
Three minutes later, Perth’s Mitch Nichols orchestrated Glory’s lead. He picked out Keogh on the six yard line, perfectly sending the ball into his path, allowing the former English Premier League striker to weave in between two Phoenix defenders and glance the ball into the back of the net.
In the second half Wellington kept pressing for the equaliser and it came through danger man Burns, who in the 73rd minute cut the ball back to Michael McGlinchey who then simply tapped the ball into the back of the net.
Both teams looked for the decider. After testing Phoenix keeper Glen Moss earlier, Nichols forced him into action again in the 84th minute with a driving shot on the half volley. Moss had no answer for a thumping strike by substitute Maclaren two minutes later, who after receiving the ball from Youssouf Hersi in the middle of the park, ran hard toward goal and fired the ball into the back of the net.
Perth Glory FC wingback Scott Jamieson said the win was a great lift for the team.
“It’s always hard coming here to Wellington, it’s a long road trip but we are very excited and proud to walk away with three points” he said.
“But let’s not forget it’s only a win in the first match, not the title and we face stiff opposition in our first home game next Sunday”.
Perth Glory will face off against Brisbane Roar on October 19 who are licking their wounds after losing their opening clash against Adeliade United 2-1.
Jamieson has encouraged all supporters to attend the home match against Brisbane.
“It’s such an important match for us, it’s the first home game of the season so I would love it if all the fans and supporters could come along and help us get back-to-back victories”.
The match against the Roar kicks off at 2pm at nib Stadium.
Wellington Phoenix: McGlinchey 73'
Perth Glory FC: Keogh 32’, Maclaren 86’
Wellington Phoenix: Bonevacia 58’
Perth Glory FC: Nichols 12’, Griffiths 26’
Wellington Phoenix: 1. Glen MOSS, 2. Manny MUSCAT, 3. Roly BONEVACIA (21. Roy KRISHNA 90’), 8.Alejandro Rodriguez GORRIN (17.Vince LIA 80’) 9.Natahan Burns, 10 Michael MCGLINCHEY, 11. Jeremy BROCKIE, 13. Albert RIERA, 18.Benjamin SIGMUND, 19. Thomas DOYLE, (16.Louis FENTON 61’) 22. Andrew DURANTE (C)
Subs not used: 20.Lewis ITALIANO(GK), 5. Michael BOXHALL
Perth Glory FC: 1.Daniel VUKOVIC (GK), 5.Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 6.Dino DJULBIC.7.Youssouf HERSI, 9.Andy KEOGH, 10 Nebosja MARINKOVIC, 11.Richard GARCIA (15. Jamie MACLAREN 80’), 17.Mitch NICHOLS, 19.Josh RISDON, 21.Scott JAMIESON 23.Michael THWAITE (C),
Subs not used: 3.Brandon O’NEILL. 13 Diogo Alves FERREIRA, 14.Chris HAROLD, 18.Jack DUNCAN(GK)
Perth Glory FC Fixtures:
Sunday October 19 2014
Hyundai A–League 2014/15
Perth Glory FC v Brisbane Roar
Kick Off 2pm (WST)