A dominant first half which saw Mark Rudan and Ruben Zadkovich turn Sydney’s dominance into goals, set up the victory, with Bobby Despotovski pulling one back for Perth, as well as missing a penalty.
The win means Sydney moves into second on the ladder behind runaway leaders Adelaide, and ensures Central Coast and Newcastle will play off for the Hyundai A-League’s inaugural premiership. Sydney coach Pierre Littbarsksi was happy with the win but said he was thinking about next week’s game at Adelaide first, before he worries about the finals.
Sydney, who had not won in their four matches since returning from the FIFA Club World Championships in Japan last month, installed striker Sasho Petrovski back into their starting XI in place of the injured David Zdrilic. With Petrovski’s presence upfront causing tremors in the Perth defence, an overhead kick from the 30 year-old almost gave the visitors the lead — before a defensive mix-up did hand Sydney the lead.
Despite the urgency of their situation, Glory seemed incapable of keeping possession — and in contrast, Sydney were slick, incisive and at times unstoppable. One such move tore the heart out of the Perth midfield, and after a weighted pass from Matt Bingley found short-term signing Zadkovic bursting into the area, his sumptuous curling finish illustrated the difference in class between the two teams. www.sportal.com.au
Perth 1 (Despotovski 56) lost to Sydney 2 (Rudan 14, Zadkovich 23).
New Zealand 1 (Zhang 71) drew with Adelaide 1 (Brain 21).
Adelaide controlled the match but failed to make the most of their many opportunities; whilst the Knights must wait until next season to record their first home win.
Central Coast 3 (Spencer 28, 63, Heffernan 87) d Melbourne 1 (Ferrante 13). Both teams had a number of chances before the break but neither could convert and the scores remained locked at half-time. After the break the Mariners sealed a finals place as they made it eight matches without a loss; whilst the Victory’s season is over.
Newcastle 0 lost to Queensland 5 (Reinaldo 10, Richter 43, Brosque 52, McKay 84, Murdocca 92). The Roar keep their finals hopes alive as they prepare to face the Mariners in their final match.