Glory stun Victory

A first-half brace from Eugene Dadi has given Perth's finals chances a shot in the arm as an undermanned Glory stunned the Melbourne Victory 3-1 at Members Equity Stadium on Saturday evening.

A first-half brace from Eugene Dadi has given Perth's finals chances a shot in the arm as an undermanned Glory stunned the Melbourne Victory 3-1 at Members Equity Stadium on Saturday evening.

Dadi scored his first with a shot that bounced in off the crossbar in the 18th minute before drilling his second four minutes later after showing some great control in the box.

The Glory could have extended the lead before half-time but narrowly missed several chances, allowing the Victory to pull one back through Ney Fabiano ten minutes after the break.

But despite pressuring the Glory goal with a series of corners and numerous attacks, the Victory couldn't score an equaliser and Adriano Pellegrino hit the Victorians with a spectacular 78th-minute strike that finished off the contest.

"It was just one of those moments," Pellegrino said afterwards. "I had an opportunity to cut inside (but) you're tired and it's late in the game and you just focus on getting to the ball and I've struck it well and it's gone in."

"It was good timing as well. I guess we were under pressure in the second half there and it took a bit of pressure off and it's just a great result for us."

Victory coach Ernie Merrick described it as a match of two halves, saying his side dropped their heads after Dadi opened the scoring.

"We conceded two soft goals by our standards," Merrick said.

"We didn't play our inter-passing game but the second half we played our quality of football and kept the ball really well."

"We scored one goal after 10 minutes into the second half, thought we'd go on with it but that goal in the 78th minute by Pellegrino that killed us really."

The win was made all the sweeter as the Glory were without star striker Nikita Rukavytsya, who failed a late fitness test on his calf.

But the Victory also suffered their own major injury setback when Archie Thompson didn't line up in the starting XI after not recovering from a knock to his knee in training, with his place taken by Fabiano.

The result sees Melbourne remain in second on the Hyundai A-League table after Adelaide leapfrogged it into top spot through its 6-1 thrashing of Wellington. The Glory, though, have moved to seventh and now find themselves just four points adrift of fourth position with seven rounds to play.

The Victory started like a rocket as they looked to atone for last weekend's 2-1 loss to Wellington. The visitors looked particularly sharp as they passed the ball around with ease and it appeared just a matter of time before the Glory conceded as Danny Allsopp saw a half chance pushed around the post by Tando Velaphi.

Despite Rukavytsya's absence, the Glory showed they were still dangerous when a powerful 9th minute volley from Adrian Trinidad flashed past the post with Michael Theoklitos well beaten.

In the 18th minute, the Glory stunned the visitors, taking the lead through Dadi.

A glancing header from the striker in midfield allowed Scott Bulloch to accelerate forward but his cross to Trinidad was too heavy, forcing the Argentine to jink his way back into the box and cross back to Dadi, whose powerful effort hit the underside of the bar and crossed the line.

The Glory were suddenly full of fire as Pellegrino's powerful effort from the right forced Theoklitos into a save before the hosts doubled the advantage in the 22nd minute.

Under pressure in the box from Michael Thwaite, Dadi showed some deft skill as he controlled Pellegrino's corner, turned and slipped the ball past Theoklitos for the second, earning a yellow card from referee Peter Green for ripping his shirt off as he saluted the shed.

The Victory weren't helping their chances by some poor disposal as they struggled for cohesion after the Glory's goals. Billy Celeski twice sent corners out of play before blasting a free kick on the edge of the box miles into the crowd.

Five minutes before the break, the Victory almost pulled one back when Allsopp's cross set up Tom Pondeljak, but the former Mariner sent his toe-poke over the bar from three metres.

In injury time the Glory came within a whisker of adding a third when defender Dino Djulbic collided with Theoklitos as he sent a header narrowly past the post.

The hosts were struggling with injuries, though as Wayne Srhoj dislocated his shoulder in an innocuous challenge but played on after popping it back in, while Trinidad took several knocks on his ankle and was substituted for Naum Sekulovski early in the second half.

The Victory appeared a more settled unit after the break and their class showed in the 55th minute when Fabiano drew one back.

Jimmy Downey and Jamie Harnwell failed to clear effectively and Fabiano used his pace and power to bustle through their challenges before advancing on goal and shooting under Velaphi at the near post.

The goal prompted Victory coach Ernie Merrick to bring on the creative Nick Ward and Carlos Hernandez for Thwaite and Fabiano respectively, with the introduction of Hernandez sparking a dominant period from the Victorians as the Glory were forced to soak up mountains of pressure.

Ward fresh aired the ball in the box with the goal at his mercy while Rody Vargas sent a 74th minute header over the bar from Hernandez's free kick as Melbourne attacked the Glory's goal with a series of corners.

But the Victory's attacking intent left them vulnerable on the counter and in the 78th minute Pellegrino made them pay. The right winger picked up the ball 30 metres out and capitalised on a slip by Vargas to cut inside and unleash a spectacular 20-metre strike with his non-preferred left foot.

Hyundai A-League

Perth Glory 3 (Dadi 18, 22, Pellegrino 78) Melbourne Victory 1 (Fabiano 55) Crowd: 6621 at Perth's Members Equity Stadium