Kerr penalty moves Glory into pole position

Sam Kerr's late penalty proved enough to secure a vital 1-0 victory for Glory in Thursday's clash with Canberra United at Dorrien Gardens.

The home skipper, who had been laid low by a stomach bug in the build-up to the game, took her tally of goals for the season into double figures by calmly converting from the spot having been brought down by Karly Roestbakken.

Full Match Highlights

The victory, Glory's fourth of the season, saw them climb back to the summit of the Westfield W-League ladder on goal difference and Head Coach Bobby Despotovski was understandably delighted with what was a battling performance against an impressive and spirited Canberra side.

"I thought both teams had something to lose and both teams really pushed to win the game," he said.

"I thought bit might take something like a free-kick or a penalty to win it and that's how it turned out.

"Overall it was an even match. It was a good performance from us, especially as Sam, Nikki [Stanton] and a few of the others had all been ill this week and I was really pleased with it. Now we'll look to kick on again in the coming weeks."

Roared on by a vocal crowd of over 800, it was Glory who applied the early pressure, with Shannon May firing a range-finder over the bar before Rachel Hill's effort was cleared off the line by the alert Taren King.

And Glory went even closer to breaking the deadlock moments later, only a stunning, full-length save from Shami Khamis preventing Leticia McKenna's fierce strike from finding the net.

After that lively start, however, the chances dried up somewhat as the half progressed, with Canberra growing into the game thanks largely to impressive performances from South African duo Refiloe Jane and Rhoda Mulaudzi.

Kerr did her best to hand Glory the advantage shortly after the break, latching on to an Alyssa Mautz cross only to see her dipping effort flash just over the bar.

The home skipper then turned provider, setting Rachel Hill away down the left, but the American's subsequent chip found the side-netting.

The next goalmouth action of note saw Hill's header from a Stanton corner blocked by Khamis, before Eliza Campbell produced a fine, one-handed save at the other end seconds later to deny Nickoletta Flattery.

The crowd were drawn to their feet on 75 minutes when May's deflected effort looked destined to creep into the net until Khamis produced a scrambling block to turn the ball around the post.

Campbell again matched her counterpart almost immediately, foiling substitute Ashleigh Sykes at close-range and as the game moved into its final minutes, Olivia Price sent a thunderous long-range effort narrowly wide of the target for the visitors.

At that stage it looked as if the two sides might be forced to settle for a point apiece, but Kerr was to have the final word with just five minutes of normal time remaining.

As she attempted to force her way into the right side of the box, the Matildas forward appeared to be impeded by the lunging Roestbakken and much to the dismay of the Canberra players and officials, referee Casey Reibelt pointed to the spot.

Having dusted herself off, Kerr calmly found the bottom corner of Khamis' net and Glory duly saw out the final moments to secure a victory that keeps their premiership hopes very much alive 

Match Details

Westfield W-League 2018/19 Season Round 10

Perth Glory 1 (Kerr (pen) 85' Canberra United 0

Half-time: 0-0

Referee: Casey Reibelt

Perth Glory: 1.Eliza CAMPBELL (gk), 3.Kim CARROLL, 4.Alyssa MAUTZ (10.Jacynta GALABADAARACHCHI 80'), 5.Shannon MAY, 7.Nicole STANTON , 9.Rachel HILL, 11.Leticia McKENNA (12.Jenna ONIONS 88') , 13.Jamie-Lee GALE, 20.Sam KERR (c), 24.Natasha RIGBY, 25.Katie NAUGHTON

Substitutes not used: 14.Caitlin DOEGLAS, 21.Morgan AQUINO (gk), 

Yellow cards: Stanton

Red cards: Nil

Canberra United: 20.Shamiran KHAMIS (gk), 4.Rachel CORSIE (c), 5.Nikola ORGILL, 6.Refiloe JANE, 8.Olivia PRICE, 9.Rhoda MULAUDZI, 16.Karly ROESTBAKKEN, 18.Taren KING, 19.Nickoletta FLANNERY, 21.Ellie CARPENTER, 23.Maria JOSE ROJAS (14.Ashleigh SYKES 54')

Substitutes not used: 1.Melissa MAIZELS (gk), 2.Laura HUGHES, 12.Lauren KEIR

Yellow cards: Corsie

Red cards: Nil

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