Floreat thrash Armadale to secure safety
Floreat Athena guaranteed their NPL WA safety on Saturday as they hammered Armadale 5-0 at Alfred Skeet Reserve.
The Round 23 win meant Floreat leapfrogged Armadale into seventh place and extended their unbeaten run to six matches, five of which have come since Garret McDuling became coach.
McDuling said his side put on a perfect performance in what was his first clean sheet with the club.
“The clean sheet was definitely something we were looking for today,” he said.
“I haven’t had one yet with my time at Athena so it was good to not only take the points but also get a clean sheet.
“Now we’ve just got to keep this momentum going for the last few games of the season.
“All the teams below us lost today which means it is safe to say we’ll be at it again in the NPL next year.”
Armadale no doubt felt the effects of their 7,000km round trip to north Queensland in midweek, where they were beaten 4-0 in the FFA Cup to Cairns FC.
But coach John O'Reilly was far from impressed with his team's display on their return.
“I think the overall performance today was completely unacceptable from the lads,” he said.
“I’m incredibly disappointed. We’ve had a fantastic season and the last thing we want to do now is undo all that good work with performances like this.
“This week in training we need to make sure we put in the yards and effort to get out heads back in the right place.”
The damage was done early on as Floreat scored three times in the opening 25 minutes.
Keylun Pollard poked in the opener in just the second minute, and just three minutes later it was 2-0 when a cross deflected off Armadale’s David Annall and found its way into the back of the net.
Before half-time Floreat added a third when Robert Petkov slid in to finish past Armadale keeper Sam Hutchings.
Armadale's hopes of staging a comeback were dashed in the 51st minute when Annall capped an awful day by receiving a red card after being adjudged to have denied a clear goalscoring opportunity witha foul.
Floreat capitalised on the one-man advantage by scoring two more.
They got their fourth in the 71st minute after Dean Evans whipped a free-kick to an unmarked Chirs Saldaris, who added to his midweek goal for the WA State Team against Perth Glory with a header here.
And the final blow came five minutes later Pollard made his way into the box before beating keeper Hutchings with a powerful strike at the near post.
Floreat Athena 5 (Pollard 2min, 76, Annall og 5, Petkov 24, Saldaris 71)
Saturday, June 30
Alfred Skeet Reserve
Referee: Steven Gregory
Assistant referees: Shuo Chen, Ethan Persse
Armadale: 1. Sam HUTCHINGS (GK), 5. David ANNALL, 7. Charlie KENNA, 9. Billy QUINNCROFT (C), 10. Christopher JACKSON, 11. Michael RIZIDIS (22. Ryan HASLETT 61), 14. Milan OGNJENOVIC, 15. Ali GHOLAMI, 16. Charlie SIMPSON, 17. James ATKINS (6. Charlie SIMPSON 77), 20. Friday ZICO
Substitutes not used: 18. Brad GREIPL, 34. Duncan LENNON-BLACK (RGK)
Yellow cards: Rizidis 47, Ognjenovic 49, Quinncroft 77, Zico 92
Red cards: Annall 51
Floreat Athena: 1. Jason SALDARIS (GK) 2. Marco SANTA LUCIA, 6. Jesse FULLER, 8. Jonathan STYNES (13. Hamza HINA 66), 9. Robert PETKOV, 14. Ludovic BOI, 15. Chris SALDARIS, 16. Ryan MALTON (3. Andreas FAZZARI 57), 17. Dean EVANS, 18. Phillip ARNOLD, 20. Keylun POLLARD (5. Harrison GEORGE 78)
Substitutes not used: 12. Laurie TODD, 99. Joshua HUNTER (RGK)
Yellow cards: Nil
Red cards: Nil