Spaniard Diego Castro has helped Perth Glory take a significant step forward in the road to the Hyundai A-league finals after an enthralling 1-1 draw against Adelaide United in the City of Churches on Friday night.
With five key players missing from Glory’s starting line-up due to injury and suspension, Glory fielded a make-shift starting 11 which included former captain Richard Garcia and Mitch Oxborrow.
As he's done all year Castro turned heads on the stroke of half time after a superb solo effort, driving into the box forcing Reds defender Dylan McGowan to commit a foul and give no option for referee Alan Milliner to point to the spot. Castro coolly converted the spot-kick to register his 11th goal of the season.
Castro’s goal cancelled McGowan’s opener earlier, who headed the ball home after Taylor Regan’s header smashed into the post. McGowan was left unmarked and had little to do but to glance his header across the line after it ricocheted off the upright.
Check out the match stats HERE
Both teams looked for the winner in the second half but the stubborn effort from both defences prevented any more goals being scored.
Glory returns to nib Stadium for its final two matches of the season, starting with Brisbane Roar next Saturday night.
It will be a major milestone for the Glory marquee man who will be celebrating his 50th match for the club which will be aiming for a spot in the top-four and host a home-final.
Kick-off is at 8pm and tickets can be purchased HERE
7’ Castro drives into the box. Pushes he ball towards Keogh in the middle where the shot deflects off Keogh but is no bother for Reds ‘keeper Eugene Galekovich
9’ Cirio shoots on goal but straight into Reddy’s hands
21’ McGowan misses a sitter in front of goal
23’ McGowan opens the scoring for Adelaide after Regan’s header hits the post. McGowan is there to head the ball across the line.
30’ Risdon carves an opening down inside the box and threads the ball to the centre. Castro shoots but the ball is blocked for a corner
37’ Mileusnic loses Risdon and crates space and shoots on goal from inside the box
39’ Glory scrambles in the box and the attempted shots are blocked by a stubborn Reds defence
44’ Harold goes on a counter attacking run and strikes on goal forcing Galekovic to save and put the ball out for a corner
45’ Castro fouled in the box by McGowan. Penalty awarded and the Spaniard makes no mistake in scoring his 11th goal of the season
48’ Mills fouled in Glory’s attacking third. Castro takes the free-kick
61’ Keogh strikes but the ball hits the side netting. Some nice link up play between the Irishman and Castro to tee up the shot.
65’ Keogh is brought down. Castro takes the free-kick but it’s well wide of the goal mouth
70’ Reddy saves. Diawara sent on a prospective run in front of goal, Reddy confronts the advancing striker to save the shot.
74’ Harold fouled.
82’ Yellow card for Diawara for a foul on Goian
89’ Keogh is subbed off after suffering a blow to his shin in a contest with McGowan
WHAT THEY SAID:
Kenny Lowe: "Of course we want to win. We always want to win. But I can’t fault the effort of the players today". (Fox Sports)