Perth Glory’s rapid front line put Sorrento to the sword in a 6-1 hammering in the 2018 National Premier Leagues WA Regional Cup at Kalgoorlie-Boulder’s Ray Finlayson Sporting Complex on Saturday night.
With Perth’s senior team facing Brisbane Roar at nib Stadium, Glory coach John Gibson rung the changes in the Goldfields after a 2-0 loss to league leaders Bayswater City last week.
And Gibson’s faith in his replacements paid dividends as spritely winger Yacoub Mustafa claimed man-of-the-match honours with a hat-trick either side of half-time, alongside strikes from Ollie Annis, Joe Knowles and Daniel Stynes.
“We’ve got incredible belief in those guys, they know that as well and they’re super courageous, so we enjoyed our trip to Kalgoorlie,” Gibson said after watching his side come from behind to win.
“We’ve got a really tough squad – we had five changes from last week – obviously there were five boys with the Hyundai A-League squad tonight.
“We have faith in these boys but they’re also terrific ambassadors for our club and they’re exciting prospects as well.”
The first NPL WA contest played in Kalgoorlie-Boulder, 600km east of Perth, the match was a cagey affair before it sprung to life in the 33rd minute through a sensational Jordan Roberts volley, who guided a Jordan Brown cross back across Glory keeper Jackson Lee to kick off the scoring for Sorrento.
The lead was short lived, however, as the pace of wingers Mustafa and Chok Dau caused havoc in the Gulls defence.
Left-back Annis levelled for Glory after 36 minutes with a top-class volley of his own, before Dau and Mustafa combined to hand the latter his first of the game two minutes later, turning the bout on its head before half-time.
Sorrento came out more strongly early in the second half and almost pulled level in the 66th minute when substitute Godwin Darkwa sneaked behind the Glory defence shortly after entering the fray, only for Lee to smother at the striker’s feet.
It proved timely, with Annis driving to the by-line just minutes later to cross for an unmarked Mustafa, who tapped in at the back post to give Glory a two-goal cushion.
Mustafa secured his hat-trick and made it 4-1 against a stretched Sorrento defence just moments later and could have had a fourth if he had not surrendered a point-black chance by passing to an offside Daniel Stynes.
But Glory would have no regrets, with captain Knowles slotting home before Sorrento’s woes deepened in injury time as captain Steve McDonald was sent off for a deliberate handball. Stynes nailed the spot-kick to complete the rout.
Disappointed Gulls coach Jamie Harnwell paid credit to Glory, whose boost in goal difference will move them above Perth SC into second ahead of the Azzurri’s top of the table clash with Bayswater on Sunday.
“In two mad minutes we gave away two goals, and then in the second half credit to Glory. They were fantastic tonight, they came out to play and they put on a good show for the crowd,” he said.
Perth Glory 6 (Annis 36min, Mustafa 38, 71, 73, Knowles 90, Stynes 90+4)
Sorrento 1 (Roberts 33)
Ray Finlayson Sporting Complex, Kalgoorlie-Boulder
Saturday, April 14, 2018
Referee: Josh Nixon
Assistant referees: Adrien Liechti, Simon Hicks
Perth Glory: 1. Jackson LEE (GK), 2. Luca BODNAR, 3. Walter SCOTT, 4. Sam RIAK, 5. Ollie ANNIS 6. Callum TIMMINS (12. Jack LEECH, 88), 7. Chok DAU (14. Daniel WALSH, 90), 8. Henry HORE, 9. Joseph KNOWLES (c), 10. Daniel STYNES, 11. Yacoub MUSTAFA (13. Michael MCDOUGALL, 90)
Substitutes not used: 15. Ablas Bukuru, 20. Nicholas SPECA
Yellow cards: Nil
Red cards: Nil
Sorrento: 1. James MORGAN (GK), 4. Shaun KILKELLY, 8. Ryan PEARSON, 10. Jordan ROBERTS, 11. Timothy HILL, 13. Steve McDONALD (c), 17. Reece VITTIGLIA, 18. Jordan BROWN,19. Jack SALTER, 20. Brad McDONALD (22. Danny JONES, 80), 23. Cameron TEECE (21. Godwin DARKWA, 66)
Substitutes not used: 12. Joel PROUT, 3. Jaxon TEMATA
Yellow cards: Brown, 70
Red cards: S McDonald, 90+3