Glory down Jets to reclaim top spot

A Neil Kilkenny penalty and Jason Davidson's first goal for the club proved enough to secure a hard-fought 2-0 victory for Glory over Newcastle Jets at McDonald Jones Stadium.

Both efforts came in the first half, Kilkenny converting from the spot following a foul by Jets 'keeper Glen Moss on Joel Chianese and Jason Davidson then hooking home a volley from close-range after the home defence had failed to clear a Kilkenny free-kick.

The win, Glory's third on the road this season, propelled Tony Popovic's men back to the top of the Hyundai A-League ladder, two points clear of overnight leaders Melbourne Victory.

And Popovic was understandably delighted to be bringing another three points back to Perth.

"The players were outstanding," he said.

"We're deservedly top of the table and there is a real spirit among the playing group and the staff and we want this momentum to continue.

"But we know how quickly things can change in football and no-one is taking this for granted. 

"Of course we would have liked to have got another goal to make it easier in the second half today, but Newcastle were good and kept coming.

"That said, I always felt that we would see it through in the second half."

A remarkable opening 60 seconds began with Liam Reddy producing a superb reflex save to keep out Jair's powerful volley and ended with Chianese being upended by Moss at the other end.

After consultation with the VAR, referee Stephen Lucas' original decision to award a penalty was upheld and unfazed by the delay in proceedings, Kilkenny calmly sent Moss the wrong way.

Kilkenny gives Glory the lead

Stung by that early setback, the home side began to apply some concerted pressure and came within centimetres of restoring parity when Daniel Georgievski whipped in a fine cross from the right and Jair saw his glancing header crash against the inside of the post.

The Brazilian then continued his duel with Reddy three minutes later, forcing the Glory 'keeper to make a smart stop low to his left with a snap-shot from just inside the area.

The visitors, meanwhile, continued to threaten on the break and could have doubled their advantage when Davidson picked out Tomislav Mrcela, but the centre-back was unable to keep his volleyed effort down.

He made amends moments later, however, by playing a key role in Glory's second goal.

Kilkenny's free-kick found Dino Djulbic at the back post, his header was helped on by Mrcela and when Moss fumbled the ball under pressure, Davidson was on hand to volley into the roof of the net.

Davidson doubles Glory's lead

And the goalmouth action continued to flow right up until the break, with Reddy again called into action, this time to block an angled strike from substitute Jason Hoffman.

The Jets were on the front foot again early in the second half, Georgievski and Hoffman both going close, but despite enjoying the bulk of the territory and possession, Ernie Merrick's men found themselves repeatedly rebuffed by a resolute and disciplined Glory defence.

With Reddy leading by example from between the posts, the men in white dug deep to secure a third clean sheet of the season and extend their unbeaten run at McDonald Jones Stadium to a remarkable 11 games.

Match Details

Newcastle Jets 0 Perth Glory 2 (Kilkenny (pen) 3', Davidson 25')

Half-time: 0-2

Referee: Stephen Lucas

Newcastle Jets: 1.Glen MOSS (gk), 4.Nigel BOOGAARD (c), 5.Ben KANTAROVSKI, 6.Steven UGARKOVIC, 7.Dimi PETRATOS, 8.Jair (16.Nick COWBURN 75'), 10.Ronald VARGAS, 13.Ivan VUJICA (3.Jason HOFFMAN 37'), 14.Kaine SHEPPARD (23.Matthew RIDENTON 65'), 17.Daniel GEORGIEVSKI, 44.Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY

Substitutes not used: 18.Johnny KOUTROUMBIS, 20.Lewis ITALIANO (gk)

Yellow cards: Boogaard,

Red cards: Nil

Perth Glory:  33.Liam REDDY (gk), 3.Jason DAVIDSON, 4.Shane LOWRY, 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Joel CHIANESE (22.Fabio FERREIRA 70'), 9.Andy KEOGH (11.Brendon SANTALAB 77'), 15.Brandon WILSON (20.Jake BRIMMER 65'), 16.Tomislav MRCELA, 19.Chris IKONOMIDIS, 88.Neil KILKENNY

Substitutes not used: 1.Tando VELAPHI (gk), 14.Chris HAROLD

Yellow cards: Chianese, Lowry, Kilkenny

Red cards: Nil

#OneGlory