First-half goals to striker Billy Mehmet and captain Jacob Burns were enough to give the Glory a vital three points against Adelaide UnitedPerth Glory are closing in on a home A-League final after a polished 2-0 victory over Adelaide United at Hindmarsh Stadium on Thursday.
First-half goals to striker Billy Mehmet and industrious former Australia midfielder Jacob Burns were enough to give the Glory a vital three points.
Mehmet opened the visitors account in the fifth minute with a contentious goal before Burns rocketed a 20-yard half-volley to ensure Glory have a hold on third spot, with Wellington Phoenix to play on Sunday.
Adelaide substitute Fabian Barbiero was shown his marching order five minutes from time for an off-the-ball digression with Perth left-back Dean Heffernan, to cap off a horror night for the Reds in front of a season-low crowd of 5,898.
The loss has all but buried Adelaide's flickering hopes of a finals spot as they sit in ninth spot, and still eight points off the Newcastle Jets in sixth.
With Adelaide still refusing to give up on a top-six finish the home side did little to suggest they were going to threaten Perth in the early stages.
The Reds failed to flow forward and were eventually punished in controversial circumstances after just six minutes.
Forward Bruce Djite was felled in the Reds' attacking half by Heffernan, and the Glory surged forward.
Burns linked well with Scottish attacker Steven McGarry, before the latter threaded a ball out wide to former Adelaide captain Travis Dodd. He in turn delivered a pinpoint cross to Mehmet, who made no mistake from six yards.
Adelaide players were furious in protest at the goal, as a replay flashed across the stadium screen showed that Mehmet was offside.
The remarkable passage of play saw a yellow card brandished to United captain and goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic for his upfront remonstration to referee Matt Gillett.
Chances dried up for either side, until a failure to clear from United's defenders gave Perth their second in the 24th minute.
A scramble from a Perth corner saw the ball bobble out to Burns, who struck a thumping 20-yard left-foot half-volley beyond the outstretched Galekovic.
Adelaide had a clear opportunity to equalise in the 39th minute when Perth stopper Bas Van den Brink made a meal of a regulation clearance, kicking the ball into Reds striker Sergio van Dijk inside the Glory's area.
But the Dutchman failed to capitalise in his milestone 100th appearance.
Dodd almost haunted his former club in his first visit back to Hindmarsh when he latched onto a long through ball clear of Adelaide's defence, only for Galekovic to beat his ex-team-mate to the ball.
Dodd again tormented the Reds in the 59th minute when he nutmegged returning Australia Under-23 representative Antony Golec to race to the by-line before cutting a dangerous ball back across goal to Adam Hughes, who fired his shot well over.
The Reds were embroiled in controversy once more when Nigel Boogaard's 76th-minute header from Dario Vidosic's corner was disallowed by Gillett, after the official had deemed Perth goalkeeper Danny Vukovic was fouled.
Barbiero had barely spent 15 minutes on the pitch when he was sent off for the second time in his Adelaide career - astonishingly also the second time as a substitute - when he clashed behind play with Heffernan.