Perth Glory Youth moved back to the top of the Foxtel National Youth League table after a come from behind 2-1 win against Western Sydney Wanderers at Blacktown International Sports Park on Saturday morning.
The home side were ahead midway through the first half, with a stunning shot from Tariq Maia, but the Glory youngsters hit back before half time through Nathan Costello. Both sides had chances after the break, but substitute Slobodan Vulin won it for John Gibson’s side 10 minutes from time from the penalty spot.
The coach was again pleased of the endeavour of his players. “Once again it was a good performance from the boys, and again we ran the game out well, which is fantastic as we have played three games in six days,” Gibson said. “We have lost a number of players recently due to injury, and we were missing our top goalscorer, Joe Knowles, today because of concussion, but the lads who have come in have been excellent and it bodes well for the future.”
Gibson was also pleased that players coming off the bench are also contributing to the side. “Last week Dejan Spaseski came off the bench and scored the winner, today it was Slobodan Vulin,” he said. “We have a good team morale at the moment and all the players are working hard to get the team structure right and we are seeing the results on the pitch.”
The home side were on top early, and glory keeper Jordan Thurtell was working overtime. On ten minutes Steve Kuzmanovski’s long-range shot was superbly saved by the Glory custodian. Moments later Alusine Fofanah burst into the area, but Thurtell stood tall to deny the midfielder. But their pressure was rewarded with the opening goal on 27 minutes. Liam Youlley made space on the edge of the penalty area and played a great ball into the path of Maia, who slotted it into top right corner of the net giving Thurtell no chance.
The Glory hit back and Borbor Sam surging run ended with a shot which Wanderers keeper Thomas Manos pushed around the post. Sam was a real handful for the Wanderers defence, and moments later he cut inside his marker, but his shot crashed off the post and away to safety. Then in the shadows of half time the Glory levelled. Cameron Edwards’ corner was punched clear by Manos, but only to Costello, and the former Armadale defender’s volley was deflected into the net.
After the break the Glory were forced on the back foot and needed some desperate defending to keep the Wanderers at bay. But the Glory were hitting on the counter attack and on 70 minutes Sam made space down the flank, and his low cross picked out Harry O’Brien, but the midfielders shot well saved by Manos. But the winner came on 80 minutes. Glory striker Todd Norris burst into the penalty area, and was brought down by Wanderers keeper Manos, and referee Lachlan Daniel pointed straight to the spot. Vulin kept his nerve to score and take all three points for the Glory boys.
Foxtel National Youth League
Western Sydney Wanderers 1 (Maia 27’)
Perth Glory FC 2 (Costello 39’, Vulin 82’)
Venue: Blacktown International Sports Park
Referee: Lachlan Daniel
Assistants: Kearney Robinson and Thomas Lee
Fourth Official: James Tesoriero
Western Sydney Wanderers: Thomas MANOS (GK), 2 Shayne D’CUNHA, 3 Daniel ALESSI, 4 Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, 5 Paul KATSETIS, 7 Steve KUZMANOVSKI, 8 Liam YOULLEY, 9 Michael TRAJKOVSKI, 10 Tariq MAIA, 11 Alusine FOFANAH, 12 Nick SULLIVAN.
Subs: Tom HEWARD-BELLE (GK) 6 Jordon KOTON, 13 Jake ADELSON, 14 Anthony SCHMIDT
Perth Glory FC: Jordan THURTELL (GK), 2 Dejan SPASESKI, 3 Jacob COLLARD (C), 4 Nathan COSTELLO, 5 Ali GHOLAMI, 6 Calvin WHITNEY, 7 Borbor SAM, 8 Harry O’BRIEN, 9 Todd NORRIS,10 Cameron EDWARDS, 11 Sidnei SCIOLA
Subs: Ryan BARKER (GK), 14 Sam MCKEARNAN, 15 Slobodan VULIN, 18 Scott ROBERTSON