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Glory need work after upset A-League loss

Perth coach Tony Popovic says the reigning premiers have lessons to learn as they look to avoid falling further behind the A-League's pacesetters.

Sunday's upset 2-1 defeat to Central Coast at home has left the Glory fifth on the ladder with just one win from their first four games.

Central Coast hadn't won in Perth in six years, and since the start of the 2014-15 season they had just five away victories to their name.

But the Mariners defied the odds, snatching an early lead courtesy of Danny De Silva then scoring again through teenage star Sam Silvera just before halftime and valiantly defending a second-half Glory onslaught to claim the three points.

Silvera stole the show in his first A-League start, picking the pocket of sleepwalking Glory substitute Jacob Tratt and curling in a superb low finish from a tight angle.

Popovic lamented his side's "lethargic" start, noting that while Central Coast had a bye last weekend, Perth had made the long trip to Wellington for a 2-1 win over the Phoenix.

The Glory will hit the road again next weekend, travelling to Newcastle to face the Jets on Saturday before themselves having a bye.

"I don't think we need to bounce back, I think we need to learn some lessons from that first half," Popovic said.

"The second half, we totally dominated and we really pressured them and they had everyone behind the ball but I always felt a goal was coming.

"And the players, you could see believed a goal was coming. But maybe we left a bit too much to do in that first half.

"Defensively, we were not good."

Off-season recruit Osama Malik was substituted off in the second half after suffering a hamstring injury.

Popovic also took aim at the match officials for not handing a second yellow card to Mariners defender Jack Clisby for a late challenge on Ivan Franjic in the 66th minute.

"It totally changes the game," Popovic said.

"I was extremely disappointed because the ref actually reaches down to his pocket to give him a yellow and for whatever reason, he doesn't go through with it.

"It doesn't really matter whether he had a yellow or not. It's a clear yellow-card offence and the referee comfortably gave those out in the first half for similar challenges."

Elsewhere, Melbourne City overcame an early scare from Wellington to snare a 3-2 victory at AAMI Park and climb top of the ladder.

City's higher goal tally puts them ahead of second-placed Western Sydney, who played out a 0-0 draw with Brisbane on Saturday.

Western United conceded two early goals against Melbourne Victory but rallied to defeat their crosstown rivals 3-2 at Marvel Stadium.

Sydney FC hammered Newcastle 4-1 on Friday night at Leichhardt Oval for their third win of the season.