It truly was a day to remember for Wellington Phoenix, who recorded their first win of the season by beating Long Distance rivals Perth Glory.
The Westerners took the lead in the opening 10 minutes after a mix up at the back caused Keegan Smith to handle a pass from Dylan Fox, who was starting for the first time this season. Xavi Torres scored from the indirect free kick just inside the box, curling home with the goalkeeper stranded.
Wellington hit back immediately though, after good work from Daniel Mullen and Roy Krishna allowed Dario Vidosic space to head home. The score was then 2-1 to the home side by the half-hour, after Goran Paracki of all people popped up to smash home another Krishna assist.
Yet within minutes of the second half whistle blowing the Phoenix had surrendered their lead, as Shane Lowry forced the ball into the net from close range.
But again Darije Kalezić‘s men had a swift reply. Krishna was once more the provider and it was Gui Finkler’s turn to get in on the scoring action.
A VAR decision with just over a quarter of the game to go gave Andrej Kaluderovic a chance to give the Nix some breathing room and he duly obliged, cooly dispatching the penalty low and hard.
‘Kalu’ had his second in the closing stages after substitute Adam Parkhouse delivered him the ball and he rose highest at the back post to head past a helpless Liam Reddy.
More goals in thirteen minutes than most international World Cup qualifiers
Honduras and Australia could not score, Peru and New Zealand was goalless, while even Denmark and the Republic of Ireland finished 0-0. So it was nice to get a couple of early goals to release the tension after so many minutes of nerve-shredding football around the world.
Not a day to remember for the defenders
It was raining goals at Westpac stadium, and this was mainly down to the respective defences being suspect and some mistakes from the goalkeepers. Both backlines were breached often and there seemed to be no ability from either team to mark properly. It was somewhat ironic that on Remembrance Day, that poor defending was a key aspect of the result.
Nix get the rub of the green
The Phoenix benefited from a VAR review with a handball in the box and confusion reigned as the review seemed to take an age to be clarified.
The officials also combined to deny Andy Keogh for offside after the Irishman had hit the net twice.