Kenny Lowe has questioned the validity of Brendon Santalab’s match-winning goal in Perth Glory’s 2-1 loss against Western Sydney Wanderers on Friday night.
Super sub Santalab struck with five minutes left when he acrobatically threw his leg at Mark Bridge’s lofted pass, chipping the ball over Ante Covic and into the net.
But Lowe felt the Wanderers striker’s boot was too high and forced Glory defender Marc Warren to pull out of the challenge for fear of being kicked in the head.
“That high foot [by Santalab] anywhere else on the park is a free-kick all day long,” Lowe said afterwards.
“I haven’t seen it back, I’d like to see it but [his foot] is above Warren’s head. [Warren’s] going for a header and he’s pulled back out.
“That’s what hurts me more than anything to lose to a goal like that.
“I just feel for the people in our changing room,” Lowe added.
“I don’t mind them getting it down, passing it through people, combination play, a great finish but when someone’s sticks a foot six-foot in the air above the left-back’s head and they get a goal from it, anywhere on the park it’s a free-kick all day long.”
The goal controversy aside, Lowe couldn’t have been prouder of his side’s performance.
Glory were well organised and made it hard for the Wanderers to play their normal fluent attacking game, with the visitors also creating a host of excellent chances on the counter attack.
“They [Wanderers] probably controlled the ball but I thought we had the better chances up until they scored the second goal then we started to chase and they had a few,” Lowe said.
“It’s just one of those days. I think Chris [Harold] has had a couple of headers; we had a few other opportunities as well but I think they [Wanderers] are the best side in the league.
“We’re coming away from here gutted that we haven’t got something against the best side in the league so I guess it shows how far we’ve come.”
It was a stop-start affair in the first half before the match sprung to life after the break.
Romeo Castelen gave the home side the lead with a rasping drive before Andy Keogh got an almost instant equaliser from the spot after Harold was brought down by Nikolai Topor-Stanley.
Santalab then broke Glory hearts by scoring the winner to snap the club’s five-game winning streak, with Perth also missing the chance to jump into the top six.