Melbourne Victory grab maximum points against Perth Glory
Melbourne Victory have recorded a comfortable 2-0 win over bottom-of-the-league Perth Glory tonight. The home side were dangerous all night but only managed to put two past the hapless Glory who remain rooted to the foot of the table with just one win in their past 16.
Archie Thompson scored the match's opener - and his third in six matches since returning from a knee reconstruction - in injury time of the first half before hurting his hamstring straight after the goal. Substitute defender Roddy Vargas headed home just after the hour-mark to essentially wrap up the three points for his side.
It was the first time this season the Victory had put two wins together but it could come at a cost if the injury to Thompson is serious.
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne Crowd: 12,164 Referee: Matthew Breeze Yellow cards:MV - Grant Brebner 6' PG - Jacob Burns 75'
Neither keeper was tested in the opening 12 or so minutes until Victory's Michael Petkovic had to come out for a dangerous aerial ball but overall, there were very few chances in the opening session of the contest.
Glory midfielder Adriano Pellegrino tried to get things going with a 19th minute crack that swerved into the base of the upright after beating Petkovic before Melbourne's Archie Thompson made a dazzling run six minutes later but his shot was a bit weak, allowing Tando Velaphi to make an easy save.
Thompson was the main danger for the Victory with his deft touches and zig-zagging runs worrying the Glory defenders as he started to bring the likes of Robbie Kruse and Marvin Angulo into the match.
Petkovic came up with a top-notch save in the 38th minute when Glory's Scott Neville, who was causing plenty of problems down the right flank, found space in the area but his shot was blocked well by the Victory custodian.
Just as the half was coming to a close, the Victory produced something special in the final seconds when Thompson managed to break the shackles and open the scoring. GOAL Kevin Muscat made an unchallenged run through midfield before playing out wide for Kruse who flicked it on to Thompson on the left flank. The A-League's leading goalscorer then played Kruse in who managed a delightful backheel back into the path of Thompson who finished with aplomb from close range but injured his hamstring trying to avoid contact with goalkeeper Velaphi and subsequently had to be substituted off at the break.
Six minutes into the second half, Carlos Hernandez almost produced some magic with a curling shot from way outside the area but Velaphi managed to parry the ball over the crossbar to keep the visitors hopes of grabbing an equaliser alive.
The Victory were looking increasingly dangerous and again almost went two to the good when Adrian Leijer's header from a Hernandez free-kick in the 55th minute slide wide of the mark but the next goalward header from a Victory player hit the target to give them a much-deserved two-goal buffer.
GOAL Hernandez's corner was met by substitute Roddy Vargas at the front post and despite Todd Howarth's best efforts on the line, the ball found its desired target and the home side were away.
Glory sub Mile Sterjovski spurned a great chance to get the visitors on the board in the 68th minute when his shot from close range was unable to beat Petkovic and it again sparked the Victory into action as they could smell a third and it almost came when Hernandez let rip after Kruse had set him up superbly just over a minute later.
The match fizzled out slightly in the last 20 minutes as the Victory were happy to keep their advantage and 2-0 is the way it finished, sending the Victory to fifth on the table.
MV Michael Petkovic (gk), Kevin Muscat, Surat Sukha, Matthew Kemp (Vargas 34'), Grant Brebner, Archie Thompson (Ricardinho 46'), Marvin Angulo, Diogo Ferreira, Carlos Hernandez (Pondeljak 88'), Robbie Kruse, Adrian Leijer
Subs - Sebastian Mattei (gk), Roddy Vargas (34'), Ricardinho (46'), Tom Pondeljak (88')
PG Tando Velaphi (gk), Josh Mitchell, Jamie Coyne, Jamie Harnwell, Jacob Burns (Fondyke 82'), Robbie Fowler, Scott Neville, Steven McGarry, Adriano Pellegrino, Anthony Skorich (Sterjovski 66'), Josh Risdon (Howarth 49')
Subs - Alex Pearson (gk), Todd Howarth (49'), Mile Sterjovski (66'), Howard Fondyke (82')