Visiting Australia A-League side Perth Glory Football Club improved on their draw against Global FC a few days ago with a 2-1 win over the UFL All-Stars today (July 23, 2016) at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila.
Chris Harold (22′), Andrew Keogh (45+2′) scored the goals for the Australian side while Louis Clark (13′) provided the goal for the UFL All-Stars. It was the second game of Perth Glory in their tour of the Philippines and they have one more this week against the Philippine Azkals.
“I thought we controlled the game. I thought we controlled the tempo,” Perth head coach Kenneth Lowe said. “I was really pleased with us to be truthful because it’s the early part of our pre-season training for us to do so well.”
It was quite apparent from kickoff that the game was going to be a thrilling one to watch. Meralco Sparks forward Tahj Minniecon signaled the All-Stars’ attacking intent with a long-shot parried away by Perth goalie Liam Reddy.
Moments later, the All-Stars were at the backfoot after Kou Ichi Belgira’s clumsy tackle inside his own box gave the referee no option but to point to the spot. Up stepped Keogh to take the penalty which was denied with a fine save by All-Stars goalie Matthew Acton.
Perth were noticeably sharper compared to their previous game against Global and Dino Djublic almost gave them the lead with a header which went wide.
However, it proved to be the All-Stars who enjoyed inflicting first blood. Kaya forward Robert Lopez-Mendy held the ball well and provided an assist to his club-mate Clark whose fine finish opened the scoring at the 13th minute.
The back and forth nature of the game meant that the All-Stars’ lead didn’t last long. True enough, Perth leveled the scores at the 22nd minute. Acton miscalculated the trajectory of Marc Warren’s cross and Harold capitalized on his mistake with a header towards goal.
In spite of the letdown, the All-Stars pushed on to regain the lead. Lopez-Mendy had a couple of sniffs on goal but he failed to hit the target. The All-Stars almost regained the lead when Minniecon had a shot spectacularly cleared off the line by Josh Risdon. They were lucky, though, not to concede another goal later in the game when Harold’s attempt hit the bottom post in between.
Just before halftime, disaster struck for the All-Stars. At the 45+1 minute, Acton was beaten once again when some good passing allowed Keogh to give Perth the lead. It ended Perth 2-1 at the break with the All-Stars perhaps unlucky to not have scored a second goal.
Compared to the first forty-five minutes, the second half was less frenetic in pace. That doesn’t mean, though, that there was less action. A Minniecon corner found its way to Masaki Yanagawa whose header went wide.
The two teams cancelled each other out for most portions of the period. Both teams’ defenses snuffed out potential chances before they could have been latched upon by each other. The know-how of Perth proved enough for them, though, to manage the affairs of the game.
The All-Stars pushed for a leveler, although time was against them. Perth weren’t in a hurry to add to their tally, yet when they advanced to the final third they were more dangerous than the All-Stars. It was the All-Stars which were given a last roll of the dice after Rhys Williams fouled Jim Flores outside the Perth box. Jason De Jong delivered the free kick which was eventually cleared by the Perth defense.
In the end, Perth ran out as 2-1 winners over the All-Stars after ninety minutes.
“It was an enjoyable game to watch off the bench,” Lowe closed.