Best of the North 1-3 Perth Glory (Half-time 1-3)
ECU Sports Complex, Joondalup
Wednesday 18th September 2013
Referee: Adam Fielding
Jamie Maclaren continued his impressive pre-season form on Wednesday afternoon, bagging a brace of well-taken goals as Glory saw off the challenge of a spirited Best of the North side at the ECU Joondalup Sports Complex.
The former Blackburn Rovers man added to his strikes against both Stirling and Melbourne Heart during another lively display up front, while Glory's third came courtesy of a 20-metre collectors' item from skipper Jacob Burns.
And with the start of the A-League season now less than a month away, Head Coach Alistair Edwards was delighted with a solid hit-out against a host team that acquitted itself extremely well given its limited preparation time.
"We wanted good games against local clubs as preparation for the A-League season," he said, "and we certainly got that again today.
"It was a very good game played in the right spirit and it was very positive for us that we got another intense game of that quality.
"We had a little discussion about sticking to our team tasks at half-time, made some adjustments and then got back down to business in the second-half."
Glory came flying out of the blocks in what was their first pre-season visit to the northern suburbs, establishing a two-goal lead within eight minutes as Burns rifled home from just outside the box and from the re-start, Maclaren found the net with a speculative long-ranger.
With Sidnei and Adrian Zahra causing havoc down the flanks, things looked ominous for the Best of the North side at that stage, but to their credit, they dug in and grabbed a lifeline on 16 minutes.
The lively Joe Knowles wriggled his way into the box only to be brought down by Brandon O'Neill as he prepared to pull the trigger and Jon Stynes calmly sent Glory 'keeper Nick Feely the wrong way from the resulting spot-kick.
That goal clearly lifted the home side who managed to keep their A-League counterparts at bay until three minute before the break when they were undone by the best move of the opening period.
A slide-rule pass from Ryan Edwards sent Zahra in on goal and rather than take on the shot, the in-form midfielder unselfishly squared the ball to present Maclaren with the simplest of chances from close range.
Perth Glory 3-1 Best of the North
Glory continued to threaten immediately after the interval, with Ryan Edwards twice going close after being teed up by Sidnei and substitute Danny De Silva who had proved too elusive for the Best of the North defence out wide.
The home side, meanwhile, rarely threatened and substitute goalkeeper Devon Spence was only called into meaningful action on one occasions, comfortably keeping out a low drive from Floreat's Aryn Williams.
Normal service was then swiftly restored at the other end as Michael Thwaite almost snatched a rare goal with a glancing header that forced a fingertip save from the home 'keeper and substitute Chris Harold just failed to convert another decent chance close to the final whistle.
"We got another full 90 minutes into a number of our players today," added Edwards, "and looking forward, we've got a game next Wednesday against the State Amateur team and then we head over east to play Sydney FC after that.
"It's clear that we've got a very good squad, everyone has been playing really well and we've got a lot to think about in terms of selecting our starting eleven for the first game of the season against Adelaide."
Perth Glory Line-Up: 1. Nick Feely (GK) (20. Devon Spence 46') , 3.Brandon O'Neill, 4. Ryan Edwards, 6. Cameron Edwards, 7. Jacob Burns (C), (Steven McGarry 46') 10. Jamie Maclaren (17. Chris Harold 52') , 11. Adrian Zahra, 16. Sidnei (18. Danny De Silva 61'), 19. Josh Risdon, 21. Scott Jamieson (2. Jack Clisby 46'), 23. Michael Thwaite
Substitutes not used: 15. Matthew Davies
Scorers: Burns 7', Maclaren 8', 42'
Best of the North Line-Up: 1. Luke Green (GK) (Joondalup United), 2. Jack Oldham (ECU), 8. Aryn Williams (Floreat), 4. Charlie Comyn-Platt (ECU), 11. Veo Human (ECU), 14. Joe Knowles (ECU), 6. Jon Stynes (ECU), 18. Danny Allen (Joondalup City), 17. Adam Rodgers (Joondalup United), 10. Alex Wild (Joondalup United), 13. Stuart Andre (Joondalup City)
Substitutes: 5. Ryan Lowry (ECU), 12. Scott Robertson (ECU), 16. Dejan Spaseski (ECU), 15. Gareth Crawley (ECU), 9. Arran Maplestone (Quinns FC), 7. Louis Hughes (Quinns FC), 21. Jamie Serra (Whitfords City)
Scorers: Stynes (pen) 16'