Sun. Dec 5th, 2021

A tap-in goal in the 78th minute for substitute Dylan Wenzel-Halls gave Australian football legend John Aloisi his first win as coach of Western United.

The Victorian club suffered a losing streak of nine games in the A-League Men with their 1-0 win over Perth Glory at home.

In his third different A-League men’s club, Aloisi showed his leadership skills and picked up Wenzel-Halls in the second half to make the difference in the game.

The 23-year-old got two shots saved by Glory goalkeeper Brad Jones before getting a goal after the ball ricocheted from the goalkeeper, then the post, before landing for his feet just inches from goal.

Wenzel-Halls said after the win that he felt a release from the pressure after scoring his first goal for his new club.

“Scoring my first goal for my new club is a monkey from my back,” he said.

“[Connor] Pain did so well [with the cross] and I could not miss it.

“We were not at our best, but we were still able to create a result.”

It was a tactical first half where both sides tried to work their way through each other’s defenses.

United midfielder Alessandro Diamanti tried an ambitious shot from the other side of the halfway point in the 20th minute and tried to steal an unlikely opening match as Glory goalkeeper Jamie Young stood outside his line.

But Young was able to step back and handball the ball over the crossbar for a corner kick.

Glory had the best chance of the first half just moments before the break as striker Bruno Fornaroli found himself with only the goalkeeper hitting the field.

From a sharp angle, the Uruguayan sprayed his left foot shot over the goal area to keep the sides without goals at the break.

Fornaroli got another chance five minutes into the second half when he was at the end of a fine pass from Daniel Stynes, and took it back into the penalty area.

From a similar spot as he did in the first half, Fornaroli fired a left-footed attack that this time Glory goalkeeper Brad Jones had to parry away for a corner kick.

Two football players go after a ball at chest height.
Fornaroli (left) threatened Glory but was stopped by United defenders including Leo Lacroix (right).(AAP: Daniel Pockett)

From there, United took over and threatened to create chances inside the Glory box.

But like last week’s loss to Melbourne Victory, United could not find the back of the net.

The breakthrough came in the 78th minute when Connor Pain took the ball to the sideline and sent a cross from Jones and hit the far post.

The ball bounced in the way of Wenzel-Halls, who stood in the goal mouth for the tap-in score.

The defeat means Glory only have one point from their two initial matches.

The Perth team had plenty of hype into the new season with the purchase of English superstar Daniel Sturridge, who did not play last Friday.

With three points on the board, United will hope this is a sign of what is to happen under Aloisi.

United will face defending champions Melbourne City next week, while Perth will stay in Melbourne to face Victory on Sunday.


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