Perth too good for Newcastle, back top of Hyundai A-League
Two first half goals from Neil Kilkenny and Jason Davidson saw Perth Glory defeat Newcastle Jets 2-0 and return to the top of the Hyundai A-League table.
Kilkenny coolly dispatched a second-minute penalty and Davidson added a scrappy second in a frenetic opening half display between the two sides.
Tony Popovic’s side held the Jets at arm's length and surrendered the majority of chances over the course of the 90 minutes, but move back ahead of Melbourne Victory into first place as a result.
Glory have re-established a two-point buffer over the reigning Champions.
The Western Australians came close to trailing to what would have been the quickest ever goal in the Hyundai A-League as Liam Reddy parried Jair’s first-time volley after just 14 seconds.
Instead, Glory broke the deadlock just moments later. Glen Moss felled the charge of Joel Chianese, and Perth skipper Kilkenny made no mistake from the penalty spot.
Jair rattled the crossbar with a thumping header and forced Reddy into a sharp low save in response, but just as the Jets’ search for an equaliser gathered momentum they fell behind in sloppy fashion.
Glory defender Tomislav Mrcela rose highest to flick on a set piece which was spilled by Moss, leaving Davidson to double the advantage from underneath the crossbar.
Reddy denied Jason Hoffman’s powerful strike at the near post late in the opening half and despite Newcastle probing for the second half’s majority, the Hyundai A-League veteran remained largely untroubled.
That was largely due to a lack of final third bite on Newcastle’s behalf. Dimitri Petratos and Ronald Vargas orchestrated large slices of territory and possession for the hosts but failed to create any gilt-edged opportunities.
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