Bafford strike gives Glory win over Lions
Report by Peter Simcox
Perth Glory players mob matchwinner Bryce Bafford. Photo by Peter Simcox
A goal nine minutes from time by second half substitute Bryce Bafford has given Perth Glory a hard-fought 1-0 win against Stirling Lions at E&D Litis Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The Young Socceroo midfielder, who joined Glory from Brisbane Roar, fired home from the edge of the box before being swamped by team mates.
The result ended a seven-game run without a win for Richard Garcia’s side and moved them to within two points of the top four, while the loss means Stirling Lions remain at the foot of the table.
It was end-to-end football early in this one. Lions skipper Dean Cummings saw his long-range shot whistle just past the post, before Glory striker Gomo Dukuly should have done better when played in on goal but shot straight at Lions keeper Ryan Montgomery.
Moments later the lively Yagoub Mustafa’s shot on the run was inches wide, while on the half hour Glory’s Jordan Abrahams volleyed wide after good work from Luke Bodnar.
It was Stirling who started the second half the better and Zdenek Bezdek and Mustafa had chances that they failed to take, before Glory keeper Nick Speca got down well to deny Cummings.
Glory thought they had the lead on 72 minutes when Bafford’s free kick picked out Daniel Walsh, whose downward header looked destined for the net only for Montgomery to produce a stunning reaction save to thwart the big defender.
It was a tight game and it looked like one goal was going to win this, and it went to the Glory on 81 minutes.
Bafford was brought down on the edge of the penalty area. Salmon’s free kick beat Montgomery but crashed off the crossbar and the rebound fell to Bafford, who fired home first time from 18 yards.
Stirling pressed late looking for the equaliser but Ajak Riak headed straight at Speca, before Danny Jones fired wide. However, they couldn’t breach a Glory defence well marshalled by Daniel Walsh and skipper Zayd Farah.
Star player: Daniel Walsh (Perth Glory)
NPL WA Round 18
Perth Glory 1 (Bafford 81min)
ECU Joondalup 0
Sunday, August 4
E&D Litis Stadium
Referee: Tom Glavovic
Assistant referees: Matthew Southern, Arvin Shanmuganathan
Perth Glory: GK Nicholas SPECA, 2 Zayd FARAH, 3 Jordan ABRAHAMS, 4 Daniel WALSH, 5 Alessandro CICARTI, 6 Luke BODNAR, 7 Ethan BROOKS (17 Trent OSTLER 58), 8 Josh SAMSON, 9 Luke SALMON, 10 Liam MURRAY (15 Bryce BAFFORD 67), 11 Gomo DUKULY (19 Gabriel POPOVIC 75)
Substitutes not used: RGK Jacob RANGE, 22 Jack LEECH
Yellow cards: Samson 30
Red cards: Nil
Stirling Lions: GK Ryan MONTGOMERY, 3 Darren O'RIORDAN, 4 David MOLINARI, 5 Steven McDONALD, 6 Dhhors CHOL, 7 Yagoub MUSTAFA, 8 Dean CUMMINGS, 9 Zdenek BEZDEK, 10 Danny JONES, 12 Jackson MORGAN (11 Michael WANTEE 67), 13 Andrew MARANTA (19 Ajak Riak 72)
Substitutes not used: RGK Daniel MARQUES, 2 Renee KISESA, 16 Nelson TSHONGO
Yellow cards: O’Riordan 38
Red cards: Nil