Smeltz strike keeps pace with Brisbane
Perth striker Shane Smeltz scored his second goal of the season to give Perth Glory a 1-0 win over Wellington on Sunday and keep the pressure on the Brisbane Roar in the Australian A-League.
Smeltz volleyed home in the 33rd minute to give the Glory their third win in three matches and put them second behind reigning champions Brisbane on goal difference. It was the New Zealand international's 52nd goal in the A League, just one behind Melbourne Victory's Archie Thompson as the leading scorer in the competition's history.
On Friday the Roar extended their unbeaten run in the league to 31 matches with an imperious 3-0 win over near neighbours Gold Coast United in Brisbane. Just as Sydney did last week, the Gold Coast pressured Brisbane early but were unable to take advantage of their dominance and conceded a goal in the 13th minute to midfielder Erik Paartalu.
And just as Sydney faded to allow the Roar to storm home, the Gold Coast also tired badly towards the end as Albanian international Besart Berisha and Mitch Nichols both scored to underline the home side's dominance. "They made it hard for us, credit to them," Brisbane coach Ange Postecoglou said of the Gold Coast. "But I guess what has shown over the first three weeks that if teams are going to stop us they have to work really, really hard."
Sydney FC got their first win of the new season when they upset Adelaide United 2-1 in Adelaide. Adelaide recruit Dario Vidosic scored in the 28th minute to get the home side away to a good start. However, Sydney slowly began to take control and leveled proceedings when Jamie Coyne struck on the hour mark, then hit the front with a Nicky Carle goal nine minutes from time.
Newcastle gave new coach Gary van Egmond an early present with a 1-0 win over Central Coast Mariners thanks to a goal from Kiwi international Jeremy Brockie, while Melbourne Victory and Melbourne Heart played out a scoreless draw in front of just under 40,000 fans.