Perth Glory can triumph without Neil Kilkenny – Shane Lowry

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Ben Halloran scored in the 119th minute of Adelaide’s elimination final clash with Melbourne City to send United into next week’s semi-final against Perth.
Melbourne Victory have progressed to the A-League’s final four after a 3-1 win over Wellington Phoenix.

Shane Lowry is confident Perth Glory has the depth to cover for Neil Kilkenny if the star midfielder is ruled out of Friday night’s A-League semifinal against Adelaide United in Perth.

Kilkenny injured his ankle at training last Saturday and didn’t train on Tuesday, placing huge doubts about whether he will be able to recover in time.

The club is keeping silent on the extent of Kilkenny’s injury, deciding against releasing the results of scans.

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The 33-year-old would leave a massive void if he is ruled out, and would force 21-year-old midfielder Jake Brimmer and Spaniard Juande to shoulder a bigger responsibility.

Attacking midfielder Jacob Italiano, 17, could earn a spot on the bench if Kilkenny is ruled out.

Lowry is confident that Glory possess enough weapons to replace Kilkenny.

“I spoke to him briefly. He’s in good spirits,” Lowry said. “I’m not too sure [if he will play]. I’m sure he’ll do his work with the physios and we’ll see what happens on Friday.

“Our squad is very strong. We’ve recruited well in the offseason. Whoever plays, everyone knows their role.

“We do a lot of video analysis. Everyone knows where they’re supposed to be on the pitch and what their job is tactically and physically.”

Neil Kilkenny
Neil Kilkenny injured his ankle at training last Saturday and didn’t train on Tuesday.

Glory will enter the match at HBF Park on the back of a 12-day break.

In contrast, Adelaide will have only had five days to recover from their epic 1-0 extra-time victory over Melbourne City last Sunday.

Perth spent almost the entire season on top of the table, and Lowry said there weren’t any nerves heading into Friday’s clash.

“Nah, not from us. There’s been people hunting us all season,” Lowry said.

Glory beat Adelaide on both occasions in Adelaide this season, but the only clash in Perth resulted in a 0-0 draw in round 15.



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