Perth Glory has recorded its first win of the Foxtel National Youth League season with a 2-0 triumph over Central Coast at Percy Doyle Reserve on Sunday.
First-half goals to Brandon O’Neill and Harry O’Brien were enough to ensure Glory collected their first points of the campaign and move off the bottom of the ladder.
O’Neill converted from the penalty spot in the 23rd minute after Ndumbe Makeche was brought down in the box by Zac Anderson while attempting to head home a cross from Riley Woodcock.
O’Brien made it 2-0 when he pounced on a sneaky flick pass from Makeche and proved too quick for Jacob Esposito and Liam Odell as he effortlessly knocked the ball past goalkeeper David Bradasevic.
O’Neill was one of the standouts for Glory as he looks to force his way back into Glory’s senior team following the season-ending achilles tendon injury to left back Scott Jamieson.
Defenders Woodcock, Josh Tucker and Mark Barnett also staked their claims with encouraging performances.
Isaka Cernak was another potential replacement to impress as he continued his comeback from a long stint on the sidelines following hip surgery.
Glory has slumped to 6-1, 5-1 and 3-0 defeats in the past three rounds, but looked a world away from those performances in the warm Perth heat on Sunday.
Attackers from both Perth and Central Coast were able to break the tight defence of their opposition in the first 20 minutes.
Nick Fitzgerald had Glory goalkeeper Jack Duncan beaten midway through the first half, but some quick thinking from Cernak ensured the home side retained their early advantage.
Duncan almost gifted the Mariners an easy goal when he spilled a shot from Patrick Dixon, but his quick hands were able to deny a swooping Adam Kwasnik.
Adrian Zahra left the pitch with a bloodied nose after aerial collision with Fitzgerald, but returned late in the half and almost scored from a free-kick that would have given Glory a commanding 3-0 lead at the break.
Central Coast came out more desperate in the second half, but it was Glory who made all the early plays.
Zahra’s long-range attempt sailed over the bar while De Silva also looked dangerous before hobbling from the pitch.
Mariners substitute Steve Whyte combined well with veteran Kwasnik in the final 30 minutes, but the pair were unable to find the back of the net.
Central Coast now have just two points from the first five rounds.
Perth Glory 2 (O’Neill 23’ pen, O’Brien 37’)
Central Coast 0
Played at Percy Doyle Reserve, Perth