Premiers reach 60 points with thumping win

Goals from Andy Keogh (2), Diego Castro, Chris Ikonomidis and Brendon Santalab eased Glory to a resounding 5-0 win over Wellington Phoenix in their final game of the regular season at HBF Park.

Match Highlights

The victory took Glory's points tally for the campaign to 60, a club record in the Hyundai A-League era and there were also personal accolades for Keogh and Castro as the former became Glory's highest goalscorer in a single A-League campaign, while the latter took out Fox Sports' coveted Alex Tobin Medal.

Roared on by a vocal home crowd, the Premiers effectively dominated from the outset and were two goals to the good by half-time courtesy of a brace of headers from Keogh.

Castro's goal, his seventh this term, arrived early in the second half and he then turned provider just after the hour-mark, teeing up Ikonomidis whom the VAR adjudged to have stayed onside as he raced on to the Spaniard's through-ball.

The scoring was rounded off eight minutes from time when Joel Chianese sent the ball across the face of goal and fellow-substitute Santalab applied the sliding finish.

Unsurprisingly, Head Coach Tony Popovic was quick to acknowledge the quality of his side's display.

Popa's post-match presser

"Overall, it was a wonderful result and a very good performance for the most part," he said.

"We sensed that the performance would be good all week. The players' attitude has been excellent, they've been pushing each other and they all wanted to play and put on a good performance. They did.

"We started well and could have had a couple of goals. I felt then, after that, that we fell away a little bit and weren't very good for the next 15 and could have conceded.

"That was maybe a bit of a wake-up call for the boys and we recovered very well towards the end of the first half and then just continued on in the second half which was really pleasing.

"The regular season is over and now we're preparing for one game. We will prepare diligently and do everything we can as a staff and I'm sure the players will continue with the great attitude they have shown since winning the Premiers' Plate."

Glory opened with a real sense of purpose and Phoenix 'keeper Olive Sail was called into action several times within the first ten minutes, producing sprawling saves to keep both Keogh and Jason Davidson at bay.

There was nothing Sail could do to prevent the hosts from hitting the front on 24 minutes, however.

The lively Ikonomidis stood up an inch-perfect cross for Castro and although Sail managed to tip his diving header on to the crossbar, Keogh was on hand to nod home the rebound.

Eight minutes later, Glory and Keogh had their second, Ikonomidis and Castro again featuring prominently in the build-up before Davidson's cross was powerfully headed home by the Irishman.

Ben Waine duly went close to halving the deficit, firing over after an impressive solo run, before Sail was called into action again at the other end, this time to parry a low shot from the hat-trick-hunting Keogh.

2-0 became 3-0 early in the second half, this time Keogh playing a key hold-up role in the move that culminated in Ivan Franjic pulling the ball back for Castro who calmly swept his shot into the bottom corner.

Sail then denied Keogh twice in as many minutes as Glory continued to rampage forward in search of a fourth, but he was helpless to prevent Ikonomidis from crashing his shot into the net after being sent clean through by Castro.

And with full-time approaching Santalab iced the cake as he slotted home a Chianese cross in front of a Shed that was already well and truly in party mode.

Glory will now enjoy a weekend off ahead of a semi-final clash with an opponent yet to be confirmed at HBF Park on Friday 10 May.

Match Details

Perth Glory 5 (Keogh 24', 32', Castro 51', Ikonomidis 65', Santalab 82') Wellington Phoenix 0

Half-time 2-0

Referee: Stephen Lucas

Attendance: 9875

Perth Glory: 33.Liam REDDY (gk), 3.Jason DAVIDSON, 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 9.Andy KEOGH (11.Brendon SANTALAB 70'), 13.Matthew SPIRANOVIC, 17.Diego CASTRO, 19.Chris IKONOMIDIS (7.Joel CHIANESE 67'), 20.Jake BRIMMER, 23.Scott NEVILLE, 88.Neil KILKENNY (29.Kristian POPOVIC 83')

Substitutes not used: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 16.Tomislav MRCELA

Yellow cards: None

Red cards: None

Wellington Phoenix: 20.Oliver SAIL (gk), 4.Mandi SOSA (23.Max BURGESS  69'), 5.Ryan LOWRY, 7.Cillian SHERIDAN (21. Roy KRISHNA 61'), 11.David WILLIAMS (15.Michal KOPZCYNSKI 61'), 12.Antony GOLEC, 13.Liberato CACACE,  18.Sarpreet SINGH, 27.Steven TAYLOR, 31. Ben WAINE, 32. Gianni STENSNESS

Substitutes not used: 1.Filip KURTO (gk), 17.Callan ELLIOT

Yellow cards: None

Red cards: None

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