Hoping to notch up back-to-back wins, Newcastle Jets hosted the high-flying Perth Glory in another wet and gloomy looking Australian city. 15 seconds into the match and Newcastle’s Jair was causing problems early with his shot denied by Liam Reddy.
40 seconds later an error from Boogaard, saw the ball in the attacking area for the Glory when Moss came out to stop a shot from Chianese. His leg raised, saw a penalty awarded to the visitors and Neil Kilkenny converts beautifully.
What an eventful opening!
The 7th minute saw a free kick awarded to Newcastle for a foul on Ronald Vargas, which on the replay looked extremely questionable and I would even argue it should’ve gone the other way for a dive. Dimi Petratos was the man to take the kick, sending it straight into the defensive wall. Petratos regained possession following the ricochet but his shot was sent straight into the arms of Reddy.
The Jets weren’t going to give up without a fight and another goal scoring chance was given in the 17th when Jair hit the post with a header from a Daniel Georgievski cross.
Was much of the same with the Jets looking the more dominant side despite the scoreboard and it looked to be a case of “when” not “if” the Jets would score an equaliser.
However, the job got a lot tougher for the home side in the 25th when Josh Davidson got on the end of a scramble in the box following a free-kick to Kilkenny and the visitors had their second.
The 39th minute saw a solid chance came knocking for the Jets when Petratos sent a driving ball forward into the goal but it was deflected for a corner. Mrcela with the clearance but only as far as Urgakovic.
Hoffman followed on with a great strike but there was Reddy again, making the save.
Two minutes into stoppage time and following a great ball from Petratos, Jair was very unlucky not to get the ball in the back of the net. Still in pursuit of a goal, Daniel Georgievski passed a beautiful ball through to the box but Sheppard couldn’t get a foot onto it and the referee signals for half time.
Disclaimer as a member of the Victory faithful I definitely had my heart set on the Jets winning so I was a little disappointed at half time, especially when Newcastle were dominating in possession and chances.
At the start of half time it was much of the same, with the Jets looking to lift and find a goal or two.
The 52nd saw another chance for the Jets from a corner but nothing of significance occurred, and the home side were left to rue another opportunity. A few minutes later a stunning run from Jair saw him send the ball through to Georgievski but hit his shot wide but was called offside soon after, so it wouldn’t have counted anyway.
The 73rd saw a solid chance for the Glory when Ferreira opened up space between the Jets’ defence line for Ikonomidis who got Kilkenny involved; Kilkenny not to be selfish crossed to Keogh but it was headed away.
The Jets still couldn’t find a way to hit the back of the net and the Glory were looking for a third (their first from open play) and it was the Jets who looked the more likely when in the 83rd Hoffman sent a low, fast ball flying toward goal but it just missed the upright.
There was the potential for drama when in the first minute of stoppage time, a VAR check decided that Dino Djulbic’s challenge on Jair was not a foul on the edge of the area; despite the protests and shouts for a penalty from the home side.
Full time and it was definitely one of those games where the “better team” didn’t win, not to take away from the Glory who took their chances when they arose. But if judging off possession, goal scoring chances and the team that looked more dangerous it definitely should have been Ernie Merrick’s men with the result.
Perth go home happy campers back on the top of the ladder and while I’m sure they will be disappointed; the Jets can hold their heads up high following a fairly solid performance.