Glory's youngsters suffered late heartache as they went down 3-2 to high-flying Bayswater City in Sunday’s entertaining PS4 NPL WA clash at Ashfield Reserve.
Following a dominant first half, Glory led 2-0 at the break courtesy of a great lob from Brandon Wilson and a clinical finish from Michael Domfeh.
But Bayswater hit back in the second half, as Luka Ninkovic swiftly reduced the deficit and Todd Howarth's deflected free-kick levelled things up, before skipper Trent Kay bagged what proved to be the winner in the 86th minute.
And rueful Head Coach John Gibson felt that his Glory side played a major part in their own downfall.
“We spoke before the game about the plan we wanted to go with and in the second half we didn’t follow that,” he said.
“We went away from all the simple things, like defending and assisting each other and all the little details. We lost our way.
“We’ve deserved more than we’ve got this season, but it’s a massive growing-up stage for us. We’re a super-young group, but the message has been the same all season; be confident, be brave, be positive and have self-belief.
“You have to believe you can win and compete and be good enough and that’s our biggest aim; to make sure these guys get the positives right and not the negatives.”
Although Bayswater had headed into the game second in the table and very much the form-team of the competition, Glory took it right up to them and were ahead on 18 minutes.
There looked little danger when Wilson received the ball in the middle of the park, but he was given far too much space and his clever lob dropped inches under the crossbar, giving City ‘keeper Devon Spence no chance.
And just before the half-hour mark, Gibson’s side doubled their advantage.
Luca Bodnar sent Daniel Stynes away down the right and his cross picked out Domfeh, whose low shot found the bottom corner of the net.
Nick Feely then came to his side's rescue in the shadows of half time, getting down well to save Gustavo Giron-Marulanda’s shot on the run and ensuring that it was Glory who headed into the sheds with a handy lead.
Within nine minutes of the restart, however, Bayswater were back in the game as Marulanda’s cross was turned home by Ninkovic at the near post.
And it was 2-2 on 68 minutes, Howarth’s free-kick taking a wicked deflection off the wall, wrong-footing Feely and ending up in the net.
Both sides created chances as they chased the game in the latter stages, with Cameron Murray’s free-kick drawing a save from Spence and Feely also being called into action to deny Ninkovic.
Four minutes from time, however, the unmarked Kay converted a Howarth cross to complete Bayswater’s comeback and although a deflected Stynes free-kick flashed narrowly wide, Chris Coyne’s men held on for the win.
In the day’s other games, meanwhile, Glory’s Under-18s secured a 3-3 draw and the Under-20s were edged out 1-0.
All three sides will be back in action on Saturday when they host Subiaco.
Perth Glory 2 (Wilson 17', Domfeh 29')
Bayswater City 3 (Ninkovic 54' Howarth 68', Kay 86')
Sunday August 6, 2017
Referee: Josh Mannella
Perth Glory: GK Nick FEELY, 2 Luca BODNAR, 3 Hayden STEVENS, 4 Cameron MURRAY, 5 Riley WARLAND, 6 Jack LEECH (15 Sam RIAK 79'), 7 Bayley BROWN-MONTGOMERY, 8 Brandon WILSON (12 Callum TIMMINS 61'), 9 Michael DOMFEH (13 Gomo DUKULY 61'), 10 Daniel STYNES, 11 Yacoub MUSTAFA
Subs not used: RGK Kyle MCDONALD, 14 Ollie ANNIS
Yellow cards: Dukuly 67', Stevens 70'
Bayswater City: GK Devon SPENCE, 2 Declan HARGREAVES (14 Shayden PASALAQUA 61'), 6 Todd HOWARTH, 8 Paul MCCARTHY, 9 Gustavo GIRON-MARULANDA,11 Devon GIBSON (15 Tristan COLLI 92'), 13 Trent KAY, 17 Borbor SAM (10 Jason MICRO 46'), 19 Luka NINKOVIC, 20 Sam MITCHINSON, 23 Andrija JUKIC
Subs not used: RGK Michael COHEN, 16 Jordan POKLER
Yellow cards: Hargreaves 20', Jukic 53', Ninkovic 72', McCarthy 76'