Crowning Glory: Griffiths says Perth can be title challengers

Perth midfielder Rostyn Griffiths believes if the club makes the right moves in the off-season then there is no reason why the Glory can’t be title challengers next year.

Perth finished in eighth place on the A-League ladder in 2013-2014, registering seven wins, seven draws and 13 losses including a horror 10-game winless run following the sacking of Alistair Edwards in December.

Kenny Lowe has been appointed as head coach for the next two years, after handling the role as a caretaker, and Griffiths is happy the club has started planning ahead.

“First and foremost I’m happy the club has made a decision, now as club we can move forward and start to plan for next season,” Griffiths said.

“I think it’ll be totally different with Kenny having the power to do what he needs to do and with the security of being the permanent coach.

“I think the next step will be obviously recruiting the right players who will add to the side and then as a club create a footballing style and direction that everyone can follow.

“I believe the club has a reasonable basis to build on and if we do the right things during the off-season there’s absolutely no reason why this club can’t be challenging for the title.”

Griffiths joined his hometown club from the Chinese Super League in January. The former Central Coast Mariner made 10 appearances and scored two goals after arriving at NIB Stadium.

The Glory will be without veteran duo Jacob Burns and Travis Dodd next season with both retiring.

Perth has a core of young West Australian products in its squad, including Josh Risdon, Matt Davies, Jack Clisby, Riley Woodcock, Daniel De Silva and Brandon O’Neill, something fellow WA boy Griffiths applauds.

“Perth has always produced some really good players and unfortunately for one reason or another they have slipped through the net, so it’s definitely good to see some good, local players coming through,” he said.

“Losing experienced players is always going to be difficult, you can’t really replace them, but that’s where the younger players have to step up and the club have to recruit wisely to try to replace those players.”

Looking ahead to next season, the 26-year old said the Glory needs to create a “no excuse environment”.’

He added: “I don’t think there’s any A-League club that could say they’re totally happy with their facilities, as there is always room for improvement.

“We have a good base but of course there’s some things that could be better. Again, it’s something that the club will decide on along with the coach to see what’s best for the players. We really need to make a no excuse environment.”

This week Perth announced the signing of former Glory defender Dino Djulbic, 31, after he spent several years playing abroad.