A second half blitz from Brisbane Roar has given them a 3-1 win against a gallant Perth Glory in Friday’s ‘Erase Racism Round’ Hyundai A-League game at the Suncorp Stadium.
Despite a bright start, with Brazilian winger Sidnei Sciola Mores going close twice in the opening five minutes, second half goals to Ivan Franjic, Liam Miller and Thomas Broich gave the home side the points.
Shane Smeltz pulled one back late, but the damage had been done, the result denying Glory points they looked like deserving in the first half.
Glory striker Shane Smeltz was disappointed with the result but believes they can still have a shot at the finals. “It’s obviously frustrating, but I thought we had a game plan, and it was working alright in the first half. But they are a good team and that’s why they are top of the table, but we gave them a few gifts tonight as well,”
“It’s been a difficult week for the club but the players are sticking together, and we will go back to the drawing board and prepare for next week," said Smeltz.
“We do have quality in the team, but we have got a tough run of games coming up especially on the road, but there are plenty of points to play for.” Smeltz concluded.
The Glory opened brightly, and went close after only two minutes. Danny Vukovic’s long clearance sent Sidnei racing clear, he cut in from the left, but his low shot was pushed around the post by Michael Theo. Then, from the resulting Nebojsa Marinkovich’s corner, Rostyn Griffiths’ headed was saved low by Theo.
The home side, which were looking to bounce back from two straight defeats, looked out of sorts, and the Glory should have hit the front on four minutes. Josh Risdon cross field ball sent Sidnei racing clear, but the result from Brazilian delayed his original chance was driven straight at Theo.
Brisbane settled and went close themselves on seven minutes, Dimitri Petratos’ snap shot from 10-yards flashed wide of the target. The home side were now dominating possession, but lacked the final ball. Petratos went close again on 21 minutes, after the Roar won a free kick on the edge of the box, after Burns brought down Besart Berisha, but Petratos curled his set piece over the top.
On the half hour, the Glory had another chance to take the lead. Sidnei and Griffiths combined to find Chris Harold on the right of the penalty area, but his first time shot whistled wide of the target.
The Roar pressed late in the half and Broich’s low cross was only inches away from Petratos at the back post. The Glory back line was working overtime, with William Gallas and O’Neill outstanding, and at the break it was scoreless.
It was a different Roar side who emerged from the changing rooms, and they went close after only three minutes. Broich picked out Miller, but the former Glory midfielder’s shot from 12-yards was superbly saved by Vukovic.
Brisbane were dominating and their pressure told on 57 minutes with the lead. Broich’s in-swinging free kick picked out Franjic at the back post, and the Socceroo midfielder head home.
Glory Coach Kenny Lowe made and attack move making a double change just after the hour mark, bringing on Darvydas Sernes and Steven McGarry, and it almost had an immediate impact. Sidnei found space down the left and whipped in a teasing cross which was only inches away from McGarry in the six-yard box.
Clisby then produced a superb last ditch tackle to deny Petratos, as the Roar looked for the second. Gallas was superb at the back marshalling the young defence, but there was nothing he could do when the Roar added a second on 81 minutes.
O’Neill looked like he was cramping up, and was caught in possession by Miller in the middle of the park. He fed Berisha, who in turn played a one-two with the Irish midfielder. It looked like the chance was gone, but Miller got a little luck with a deflection of Vukovic, and fired home from close-range.
It was a bitter blow for O’Neill, who had been impressive on his first start for a number of weeks, but it got worse as Brisbane made it 3-0 four minutes later.
Miller found Broich 20-yards from goal, he wasn't closed down, and the German midfielder curled his shot into the corner of the net giving Vukovic no chance.
The Glory continued to battle and were rewarded in stoppage-time with a consolation goal from the Marquee Australian, Shane Smeltz. Roar skipper Matt Smith’s cross field ball was intercepted by Smeltz, who finished clinically past Theo.
The final whistle see's the Roar move seven points clear of Western Sydney Wanderers at the top of the table, while the defeat sees Perth Glory await the result of the Melbourne Derby to find their position on the table.
‘Erase Racism Round’ Hyundai A-League – Round 21
Brisbane Roar 3 (Franjic 57’, Miller 81’, Broich 85’)
Perth Glory 1 (Smeltz 91’)
Friday 28th February 2014
Venue: Suncorp Stadium
Attendance: 10, 896
Referee: Ben Williams
Assistant Referee 1: Matthew Cream
Assistant Referee 2: Hakan Anaz
Fourth Official: Matthew Gillett
Brisbane Roar: GK Michael Theo, 2 Matthew SMITH, 3 Shane STEFANUTTO, 5 IVAN Franjic, 7 Besart BERISHA, 11 Liam MILLER, 13 Jade NORTH, 17 Matthew McKAY (8 Steven LUSTICA 82’), 18 Luke BRATTAN, 22 Thomas BROICH, 23 Dimitri PETRATOS (10 HENRIQUE 88’)
Substitutes not used: RGK Matthew ACTON, 15 James DONACHIE, 16 Jean Carlos SOLORZANO
Yellow Cards: Nil
Perth Glory: GK Daniel VUKOVIC, 2 Jack CLISBY, 3 Brandon O'NEILL, 5 Rostyn GRIFFITHS (14 Steven McGARRY 59’), 7 Jacob BURNS, 8 Nebojsa MARINKOVIC (28 Darvydas SERNAS 59’), 9 Shane SMELTZ, 16 Sidnei SCIOLA MORAES, 17 Chris HAROLD (20 Danny DE SILVA 75’), 19 Josh RISDON, 36 William GALLAS
Substitutes not used: RGK Jack DUNCAN, 10 Jamie MACLAREN
Yellow Cards: Marinkovic 5’, Griffiths 46’
Perth Glory next play Wellington Phoenix away on March 9.
You can view the game Live on Fox Sports, check your local guides for times.