Perth Glory travel to Sydney after reaching the clubs highest high in 15 years. Sunday night saw Perth Glory defeat the Newcastle Jets 1-0. crowning them A-League Premiers.
With only a four day turnover, the Glory players didn’t have much time to celebrate. And if Popovic’s hard ass managerial style is anything to go by, they were probably advised to only have two standard drinks (yeah sure). However, I do think 2 x of the Tony trifecta over at the Glory certainly raised the roof that evening.
Many neutral fans and Glory fans, were hoping we’d see an ever so sweet guard of honour from Sydney FC pre-match. This we did not. Sydney FC were too busy with their wank fest over Brosque’s recent announcement to retire. And wank they should, he’s an exceptional leader and an exceptional teammate. Poor Brosquey was left out of the squad due to some type of fascia something. His heel, pretty sure that area is the heel. But he thinks should be good to go for next week.
The game started pretty tight. Perth Glory were no where near as tired as we imagined. That’s probably cos they left most of their team at home. Popa resting some key players now that the Glory can take their foot off the pedal still didn’t stop the beautiful football the men from the West have been showcasing for us this season.
A rarity this season saw Santalab starting up front for Perth whom has also recently announced his retirement from professional football. If the retiring A-League players from this season all got together for a 5 a side team, I’d be shaking in my Mercurials lining up against them.
Most of the first 20 minutes was spent finding the offside flag like it was Easter eggs during a hunt, in which Sydney FC were definitely winning. While the sky blues tried to remember the rules of the game without a loud-mouthed Brosque on the pitch or bench, Perth Glory’s ‘B’ team were trying to play old school Popa tactics of pass it to Santa.
In the 37th minute, the Manchester City version of Brosque (Caceres) whipped in a ball to an arriving Retre who headed the ball all the way to the far end of the goal, to what I believe may have been millimetres away from crossing the line. Luckily for the sky blues, Le Fondre was there to guide the ball where it belonged, making it 1-0 to the boys in blue.
The second half screamed ‘I need to save myself for finals’ from the Glory and ‘Come on you boys in blue’ from The Cove. As the game started to get flat, I started to tune out.
Rhyan Grant and Brandon O’Neill worked off the pending Easter intake of sweets as they worked their asses off. Meanwhile, Chianese and Kilkenny were significant for Sydney.
Perth Glory’s depth was highlighted towards the last 20 minutes. Unable to find more players during rest week, they just chucked on the coaches son. I’m pretty sure Popa just played him in order to catch a free flight to Sydney to be with the family for Easter. But you know what? Kid’s kinda good. Who woulda though the son of a former Socceroo would be good.
Thankfully for fans everywhere we got to see a Santalab yellow card in the 78th minute for a poor challenge on Le Fondre. This may just be the last time we ever see Santa foul a Sydney FC player, it was a special moment.
In stoppage time, Glory tried it all to equalise. Including a penalty shout for hand ball in the box but unfortunately for the newly crowned Premiers, no luck and play on.
The game ends at 1-0 giving the current Premiers their first away loss of the season. Glory not allowing this loss to impact their run into finals whereas Sydney FC’s performance tonight could possibly do just that. Both teams could gain a loss next week with Sydney FC facing the unpredictable Newcastle Jets and Perth Glory heading home to close out the regular season against the Nix.
By Rose Valente