Sky Blues Unbeaten Streak Comes To An End

Table Toppers Perth Glory extended their lead on the Hyundai A-League ladder with a late come from behind win against Sydney FC at Allianz Stadium on Thursday night.

Summary

Sydney FC 1 (Smeltz pen 55’) def by Perth Glory 2 (Griffiths 83’, Keogh pen 86’)

Sydney FC’s eight match Hyundai A-League unbeaten streak came to an end as league leaders Perth Glory snatched a late win at Allianz Stadium tonight.

The Sky Blues dominated the second half and took the lead through a 55th minute chipped Shane Smeltz penalty after Dino Djulbic had handled inside the penalty box.  Danny Vukovic pulled off a remarkable one handed save from Terry Antonis four minutes later as Sydney FC searched for a second goal to kill off the game.

However a Rostyn Griffiths header from a free kick and an Andy Keogh penalty in the final seven minutes secured the points for Perth to snatch victory at the top of the table.

What they said

Graham Arnold: "I have to say I think that's the best we've played over the last month, or three games let's say. I thought today we controlled big periods of the game. We had disruptions during the week but overall there were a lot of positives to come out of it but it’s disappointing to lose in the last five minutes.

"There was a lot of space either side of Rostyn Griffiths and we tried without Janko to go with an extra midfielder to open up space for Brosque and Bernie and it worked well at times.

"They were the better side in the first half and we were the better side in the second half. We needed the second goal when we got the first, if we had got that I think we would have gone on and won the game." 

Goals

55’ SMELTZ PENALTY – Sydney FC attack down the left hand side through Smeltz and Gersbach with the latter crossing to Ibini at the far edge of the penalty area. Ibini plays the ball back to Smeltz and his goalbound shot hits the arm of Djulbic inside the area to give the Sky Blues a penalty.  Shane Smeltz steps up to take and chips the ball delightfully down the middle of the goal as Vukovic dives left out of the way.

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83’ GRIFFITHS GOAL – Marinkovic swings in a curling right footed free kick from the right hand touchline and Griffiths rises unmarked to power home a header inside the box.

86’ KEOGH PENALTY – Jamieson makes a darting run through the Sydney FC defence, goes down under a challenge and the referee Miliner awards a penalty despite Sky Blues players’ protestations.  Andy Keogh steps up to send Janjetovic the wrong way and seal the win for Perth.

Key Moments

8’ JANJETOVIC SAVE – Nichols finds space inside the right hand side of the box and fires a low shot on target which Janjetovic saves with his legs.

34’ JURMAN BLOCK TACKLE – Keogh is played clean through but Jurman comes from nowhere to make a last ditch tackle as the strike pulls the trigger.

36’ IBINI SHOT SAVED – Antonis played the ball out wide right to Ibini, the Socceroo plays a one-two with Rhyan Grant, before he beats his defender and aims a right foot shot at goal which Vukovic has to push wide.

53’ ANTONIS VOLLEY WIDE – Terry Antonis catches the ball perfectly on the volley from out wide on the right and fizzes it across the face of goal and just past the post.

59’ ANTONIS SHOT SAVED – A break away by Sydney FC from a Perth attack is led by Smeltz who feeds Ibini on the right. He beats his man and centres for an unmarked Antonis who shoots goalward, but Vukovic raises his left hand to palm away a certain goal.

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Team News

Sydney FC 1 (Smeltz pen 55’) def by Perth Glory 2 (Griffiths 83’, Keogh pen 86’)

Graham Arnold recalled Matthew Jurman into the heart of the defence at the expense of the suspended Seb Ryall.  Striker Marc Janko succumbed to a slight groin injury which meant Shane Smeltz moved to a more natural centre forward role while Milos Dimitrijevic returned to the midfield.  Rhyan Grant continued his role in place of the injured Ali Abbas.  Peter Triantis and Aaron Calver joined Bouzanis, Naumoff and Nick Carle on the bench.

Ground: Allianz Stadium

Referee: Alan Miliner

Attendance: 11,280

Sydney FC:  20. Vedran JANJETOVIC, 4. Pedj BOJIC, 5. Matt JURMAN (19. Nick CARLE 8’), 6. Nikola PETKOVIC, 8. Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, 9.Shane SMELTZ, 11. Bernie IBINI, 14. Alex BROSQUE, 16. Alex GERSBACH, 17. Terry ANTONIS, 23. Rhyan GRANT (13. Christopher NAUMOFF 73’).

Subs Not Used: 30. Anthony BOUZANIS, 18. Peter TRIANTIS, 25. Aaron CALVER.

Yellow cards:  None.

Red cards: None.

Perth Glory: 1. Danny VUKOVIC, 5. Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 6. Dino DJULBIC, 9. Andrew KEOGH (15. Jamie MACLAREN 92’), 10. Nebojsa MARINKOVIC, 11. Richard GARCIA (8. Ruben ZADKOVICH 73’), 17. Mitch NICHOLS, 19. Josh RISDON, 20. Daniel DE SILVA (14. Chris HAROLD 67’), 21. Scott JAMIESON, 23. Michael THWAITE.

Subs Not Used: 18. Jack DUNCAN, 13. Diogo FERREIRA.

Yellow cards:  Djulbic 56’, Nichols 66’

Red cards: None

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