Glory beat Phoenix 3-2 in extra-time

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    It was two years in the making, but Perth Glory finally got their revenge over Wellington Phoenix with a thrilling 3-2 extra-time triumph in Saturday night’s A-League minor semi-final at nib Stadium.

    Glory were left heartbroken in 2010 when they were knocked out of the finals race via a penalty shootout against the Phoenix.

    But this time it was Wellington who were left to feel the pain, with substitute Todd Howarth’s 112th-minute winner sending Perth through to next Saturday’s preliminary final, where they will take on either Brisbane or Central Coast.

    Glory defender Bas van den Brink scored the game’s opener in the 13th minute, but the 13,695 crowd were left stunned when goals to Chris Greenacre and Manny Muscat gave Wellington a 2-1 lead after 55 minutes.

    However, there would be another twist in the tale, with import Billy Mehmet scoring the equaliser in the 72nd minute after a beautiful double-touch from Shane Smeltz in the box.

    Smeltz, who had bagged seven goals in his previous two matches, had a rare off night, wasting three golden chances.

    But Howarth, a defender by trade, showed him how it’s done, tucking away the winner deep into the second period of extra-time to send the Glory through to their first ever A-League preliminary final.

    Wellington defender Ben Sigmund infuriated Glory players during the week when he claimed Perth were merely a one-man band led by Smeltz.

    Sigmund backed away from the claims pre-match, saying: “to be honest a journalist sort of made that one up. Whoever wrote it has caused a few fights.”

    Whatever the case, the comments fired up the Glory early on, with the home side creating numerous opportunities in an entertaining first half.

    Mark Paston did well to keep out Travis Dodd’s glancing header in the 12th minute, but the Phoenix custodian was helpless a minute later when van den Brink pounced on Tony Lochead’s goal-line clearance to bang home the Glory’s opener.

    A charging Smeltz should have done better with a one-on-one opportunity against Paston in the 18th minute, while Mehmet almost scored with a wonder volley in the 34th minute when Glory skipper Jacob Burns delivered an inch-perfect lob into the box.

    Chances were few and far between for the Phoenix in the first half, but whatever was said in the half-time break seemed to work a trick.

    The visitors were back on level terms in the 47th minute when a beautiful chest down from Tim Brown allowed Greenacre to score.

    And when Muscat found an acre of space on the right, cut inside and then put a curling effort past a diving Danny Vukovic, it looked as if Wellington would steal victory.

    But Mehmet’s equaliser and Howarth’s late winner ensured Perth’s fairytale season would continue for at least another week.

    Brisbane and Central Coast face off on Sunday, with the Mariners needing to turn around a 2-0 deficit from the first leg.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (15)

    • April 8th 2012 @ 7:59am
      pete4 said | April 8th 2012 @ 7:59am | ! Report

      Very good game end to end… or should I say Glorious stuff 🙂

      How’s Sage’s reaction at the end? Classic

      • April 8th 2012 @ 11:11am
        PeterK said | April 8th 2012 @ 11:11am | ! Report

        pete4, I don’t have Fox or much access to live stuff. What was Sage’s reaction?

        • April 8th 2012 @ 11:23am
          PeterK said | April 8th 2012 @ 11:23am | ! Report

          Ah, I see on the “live scores” which I was unable to follow last night due to religious observance at the time, that he jumped into Fergie’s arms!!!

          • April 8th 2012 @ 11:25am
            pete4 said | April 8th 2012 @ 11:25am | ! Report

            Yeah I must admit it’s good to see the Perth Glory up there again

    • April 8th 2012 @ 8:39am
      Titus said | April 8th 2012 @ 8:39am | ! Report

      Good on the Glory!

      After some tough years, things are looking up for the Glory; ACL, a shot at the finals, and playing some great football.

    • April 8th 2012 @ 9:35am
      The Bear said | April 8th 2012 @ 9:35am | ! Report

      As I expected. Wellie just couldn’t really put a team performance together. Whereas Perth looked cohesive and more on form. Question, since when is ACL qualification based on home and away season ladder position… I must have missed that one?

      Comment left via The Roar’s iPhone app. Download The Roar’s iPhone App in the App Store here.

      • April 8th 2012 @ 11:16am
        PeterK said | April 8th 2012 @ 11:16am | ! Report

        The Bear, I hope someone can clear this up for us. My belief is that the Premiers (CCM in this case) plus the winners of the GF are in the ACL. I’m not sure of the third position we now seem to have, and also there is a way of selecting the second whenever the same team is Premiers and Champions — which is either whoever came second in the Premiership or whoever was the loser in the GF.

        You (and others) will see how confused I am. Let’s hope someone clears it up for us both!

        • April 8th 2012 @ 11:39am
          Nathan of Perth said | April 8th 2012 @ 11:39am | ! Report

          Champions, Premiers and either the runner up of the Grand Final or else third place on the ladder if the runner up has already qualified. So after eliminating Heart and Wellington, only Glory can take the remaining spot.

          • April 8th 2012 @ 1:18pm
            Axelv said | April 8th 2012 @ 1:18pm | ! Report

            and Wellington couldn’t qualify because they belong to the OFC federation.

    • April 8th 2012 @ 11:44am
      Nathan of Perth said | April 8th 2012 @ 11:44am | ! Report

      We were all absolutely ecstatic last night – the singing and jumping and hugging of random people continued long after the final whistle in the Shed. It definitely meant a lot after so long making up the numbers. Just sad that that was the last home game of the season ):

      Fergie we always had doubts but it looks like you’ve delivered. Top 3 from Oblivion 10th!

    • April 8th 2012 @ 12:44pm
      ChrisW said | April 8th 2012 @ 12:44pm | ! Report

      Great game GJ to our opponents Wellington who played some good football and deserved a pen.

      • April 8th 2012 @ 1:18pm
        Nathan of Perth said | April 8th 2012 @ 1:18pm | ! Report

        Can’t say I really agree on the penalty claim, from what I saw on the replay screen there was nothing I could see that would represent a careless or reckless charge, push, trip, strike or anything else.

    • April 8th 2012 @ 3:06pm
      Bondy said | April 8th 2012 @ 3:06pm | ! Report

      A great game of football it had it all ,the fightback from the Pheonix and the fightback from the Glory, I thought the Nix would pack it in they put up a spirited performance but the Glory were deserved winners they were to good .

      One thing I noticed is that game between the Glory and the Nix was played straight after the West Coast eagles game and directly up against the Collingwood game and an N.R.L. game, my point is I dont mind the other sports but we have from Friday evening to Sunday night for two games and their put on at peek period I find that unusual .

      • April 8th 2012 @ 3:42pm
        Nathan of Perth said | April 8th 2012 @ 3:42pm | ! Report

        Scheduling the match so that it started before the Eagles one finished was a bad call. First home game of the season, probably cost us about 2k in cross-code supporters and after-match walk ups. Que sera, I guess. You do have to wonder where we’re supposed to be able to fit this additional 6,000 that we were short of capacity. Those who were there made enough noise. People in the Family stand opposite the Shed said that we had all four sides of the stadium singing in unison at stages.

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