Perth Glory women’s season ended in heartbreak as they missed out on the A-League finals on goal difference, despite a 3-1 win over bottom-placed Wellington Phoenix on Friday.
They went agonisingly close but could not leap Melbourne Victory, who clung on in a goalless draw with Canberra United to grab fourth spot.
Glory are the feel good story of the year after finishing bottom without a win last season, but there was no happy final chapter at WIN Stadium with players left devastated.
Glory played only one game at home this year and have been based in Sydney since the New Year.
“There is disappointment, a level of emptiness,” coach Alex Epakis said.
“I’m going to feel empty when we start going our separate ways. It’s a bit sad, it’s a bit scary.
“Where we were 12 months ago, the hurdles we’ve had to overcome. We’ve achieved so much.
“You can’t underestimate how difficult some of the challenges were. Despite not making the finals we won something, the group won something.
“We said if it was going to be our last, we wanted to go out with a bang.
“We’ve just got to continue to take stock of the success we have had.”
Glory were hit by the late loss of Danish international defender Mie Leith Jans with a broken left wrist.
They took the lead from a first-half Isabel Gomez own goal and added two more after the break from Cyera Hintzen, her fifth of the season, and Aideen Keane on her starting debut.
Phoenix dragged one back when Grace Jale fired home from the penalty spot after Cushla Rue was brought down.