Sunday, October 28, 2007

Pass marks for Perth, but only one credit

Round 10 match analysis, QR 3 v PG 3

WHAT a match at Suncorp. In arguably the game of the season, Perth found another novel way to throw away valuable points, but it was the way they got themselves in front that was most impressive about their performance.

Skipper Simon Colosimo was despondent in the post match interview with Nick Meredith, describing the performance as ‘crap’, but these were the words of a skipper shattered his men couldn’t maintain yet another two-goal lead.

Understandable, considering the context of their season and the need for three points, but a closer inspection highlights more signs that a couple of wins surely aren’t far away.

For much of the first half it was Perth’s brilliant passing game that allowed them to control the match and gave them a deserved 2-0 lead approaching the break.

Ron Smith has been under the pump of late, but here was an emphatic response, a performance of real swerve and verve from a Glory side clearly intent on playing football.

The fact his starting 11 featured the likes of Celeski, Danze and Micevski, all ball players, told much about Perth’s intent. Couple that with Colosmio’s placing in midfield and the recent willingness of fullbacks Downey and Topor-Stanley to get forward and link, and you have a far more attractive Glory than we had seen in the opening third of the season.

Their first goal was a classic case in point, a seven pass move shifting the ball from the left side of defence, efficiently through central midfield, creating the space for Celeski down the right.

While his cross was inadvertently converted by Moore, it was the series of one touch football involving Colosimo, Danze and Celeski that pulled the Roar out of shape. Wonderful play.

It got better. A minute or two before the second, Perth strung together a wonderful series of 14 passes, shifting the ball through the midfield and around the back until some space was created for Topor-Stanley down the left.

It started with a hasty Queensland clearance which fell at the feet of Celeski on the right. Instead of blazing away and firing a ball into the mixer for the sake of it, he put his foot on it and squared it for Colosimo, who did the same. The patient pattern continued until a switch of play from right to left, where Topor-Stanley, having a smashing half, won a throw-in. Watch it if you can find a copy.

A minute later, another incisive four pass move involving Coyne, Colosimo, Harnwell and Danze again found Topor-Stanely, who burnt Griffin and teed up Harnwell. Thrilling stuff, a reward for the earlier patience. Perth was all over it.

Surely they wouldn’t let it slip again!

But they did. In stoppages, Marchino, having his best game in orange, got on the end of some neat hold-up play from Kruse and finally found the back of the net with a clinical finish.

Given the lifeline, the second period was a completely different affair. Suddenly it was the Roar keeping the ball, Seo dictating terms from deep in midfield.

Sensing a shift in the flow, Frank Farina introduced a second striker, Lynch on for Griffin. Hit and miss up until now, Lynch gained a bit of confidence from the spot (nothing like hitting the back of the net!) before finishing expertly to give his side the unlikeliest of leads.

Poor Perth, poor Smith, more points lost it seemed. But spurred on by the confirmation of five minutes of stoppages, Perth didn’t resort to pumping it into the box. They kept playing. When Downey and substitute Bertos had the ball on the right, seemingly with nowhere to go, it was a neat one-two that saw Bertos driving into the box. Nothing came of it, but it was wonderfully inventive in restricted space.

Then, when Coyne, excellent throughout (along with his central defensive partner Djulbic), played a neat one-two with Bertos through the centre of the Roar’s midfield, Perth had their reward.

Three goals, from three one-two’s, but no three points.

Only one credit on the table, but the real credit was the manner of their performance. Pass marks indeed.


Anonymous Ed Vegas said...

Hi Tony,

I was at the game - what a heart breaker!

Was interested to know if anyone else heard Liam Reddy swear at the (very young)ball boy shortly after being warned for kicking the ball away.

Reddy's use of the F word to the child was clearly overheard by a large section of the crowd around bay 332/331 resulting in some boo's and whistles for him.

I reported the incident to Roary after the game, having failed to attract Craig Moore's attention.

You must have to drink a lot of beer before the thought "tell the giant Lion - He will know what to do" makes sense.

I would like to see the club make a clear statment that this kind of behaviour is not acceptable in the Orange shirt.

"There's only one Tommy Willis, one Tommy Willis"

Mon. Oct. 29, 04:08:00 pm AEDT  

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