Perth Glory has been held to a 2-2 draw with Western Sydney Wanderers in a fiery encounter at nib Stadium today.
A season-high crowd of 13,290 witnessed the high tempo game, and was treated to two-goals in the opening five minutes.
The Wanderes got off to a blistering start, with marquee midfielder Nicolas Martinez scoring after just 32 seconds. Ex-Glory midfielder Mitch Nichols played through the Argentinean, who unleashed a stinging strike across the body of Liam Reddy and into the bottom corner from over 20 metres out.
The lead lasted only four minutes as Glory found an equaliser from a set piece. Nebojsa Marinkovic’s inch-perfect cross found centre-back Alex Grant at the back post, sending a towering header inside the far post past Wanderers custodian Andrew Redmayne.
The second half began with the same frenetic pace as the first and Glory’s second goal soon followed. Josh Risdon put Chris Harold through on the right wing, the pacy winger’s low cross was palmed away by Redmayne only as far as skipper Andy Keogh, finishing from close range to score his fourth of the season.
Santalab soon popped up with his fourth goal of the season, tucking his finish across Liam Reddy after an incisive through ball from Martinez.
Perth Glory was forced to settle for a draw but remains undefeated in its last nine matches at home.
Glory will attempt to get back to winning ways against the high-flying and undefeated Sydney FC away next week.
1’ Wanderers score, 1-0. Nicolas Martinez puts Wanderers up immediately after kick-off after slotting home from Mitch Nichols through ball.
5’ Glory score, 1-1. Brilliant free kick from Nebosja Marinkovic as he whips in a tantalising ball for Alex Grant to nod into the bottom corner
10’ A brilliant back heel from Andy Keogh sends in Diego Castro one-on-one but he hooks his shot wide of the post.
39’ Nicolas Martinez has some time outside the box himself but can only curl it over the bar.
45+ Brendon Santalab finds himself in on goal but Grant narrows the angle and his shot is low and hard and straight at Reddy.
48’ Castro shot from the left hand side of the box is deflected for a corner.
51’ 2-1, Glory scores. Harold’s low cross is cut back is parried by Redmayne into the path of skipper Andy Keogh, who buries the loose ball.
63’ Harold sends a superb long ball for Castro to run onto, who then marauds the Western Sydney defence but his through ball for Williams goes astray.
67’ 2-2, Wanderers score. Brendon Santalab makes no mistake after being put through by Nicolas Martinez, striking his shot low across the body of Reddy.
70’ Smiljanic takes a strike from outside the box after Risdon’s cutback from Mills’ cross but it doesn’t have enough venom on the effort, Redmayne saves comfortably.
87’ Harold sends a header towards the near post but Redmayne makes a superb one hand save to parry away.
What They Said:
“You can’t criticise anyone’s effort but we didn’t have enough goalmouth action & didn’t threaten them enough.”
“The first goal was a great response, I’m pleased for Alex (Grant) getting on the end of it putting it away.”
Perth Glory 2 (Grant 5’, Keogh 51’)
Western Sydney Wanderers 2 (Martinez 1’, Santalab 67’) nib Stadium, Perth
Referee: Kurt Ams
Assistants: Josh Mannella, Matthew Southern
Fourth Official: Adam Fielding
Perth Glory FC: 2. Alexander GRANT, (73’), 6. Dino DJULBIC, 15. Brandon WILSON (5. Rhys WILLIAMS 57’) 9. Andy KEOGH, 10. Nebojsa MARINKOVIC (7. Joel CHIANESE 73’), 14. Chris HAROLD, 16. Joseph MILLS, 17. Diego CASTRO, 19. Joshua RISDON, 24. Milan SMILJANIC, 33. Liam REDDY (GK)
Subs not used: 13. Nicholas FEELY (GK), 8. Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 23. Kosta PETRATOS
Yellow Cards: Rhys WILLIAMS (61’), Dino DJULBIC (62’), Milan SMILJANIC (86’), Diego CASTRO (87’)
Red Cards: nil
Western Sydney Wanderers: 3. Jack CLISBY, 6. Mitch NICHOLS (15.Kearyn BACCUS 79’), 8. DIMAS Delgado, 10. Nicolas MARTINEZ, 11. Brendon SANTALAB, 12. Scott NEVILLE, 13. Bruno PINTARES (5. Brendan HAMILL 89’), 16. Jaushua SOTIRIO (14. Jumpei KUSUKAMI 55’), 17. Aritz BORDA, 22. Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS
Subs not used: 1. Jerrad TYSON (GK), 23. Lachlan SCOTT
Yellow Cards: Bruno PINATARES 29’, DIMAS Delgado 34’, Aritz BORDA 89’, Brendon SANTALAB 90’
Red Cards: nil