Russell strike fires Wanderers past Glory to claim first win in six

Julie-Ann Russell hit the winner to keep Western Sydney Wanderers' final hopes alive and end their five-game winless run in a 1-0 triumph over Perth Glory.

The Republic of Ireland international slammed in her first Westfield W-League goal on the brink of half-time after the competition's bottom placed club had the better of the first 45 minutes at Marconi Stadium but could not capitalise and claim their first win of the campaign.

Glory threatened first when injury-replacement player Taneesha Baker tried her luck from distance and had Wanderers keeper Sarah Willacy worried in the 10th minute, before minutes later Hana Lowry lost her footing while bearing down on goal after a twisting run by Lexie Moreno.

The Red and Black were struggling to create meaningful opportunities until captain Caitlin Cooper surged forward and parted the Perth defence, before slipping the ball to Russell, who applied a confident left-footed finish on the cusp of half-time to leave the away side stunned.

Alexander Epakis' team were almost punished again moments after the restart but Libby Copus-Brown's dipping strike was pushed on to the crossbar by the fingertips of Lily Alfeld and suddenly Perth were living a charmed life when Russell's cross was prodded wide by Bryleeh Flo Henry.

Russell's hooked shot was parried away by Alfeld at point-blank range as Dean Heffernan's team pushed for a second, and the keeper had to react quickly again to deny Baker. Kim Carroll headed Baker's attempt away from the line and Copus-Brown again struck the bar as Wanderers finished on top.

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CHANCE: Baker - Willacy almost caught out by the midfielder
GOAL: Russell - Wanderers strike just before the half
SAVE: Alfeld - Glory keeper uses every inch to deny Copus-Brown
CHANCE: Henry - Perth somehow survive
CHANCE: Hunter - Western Sydney itching for that second goal

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