Brisbane fall in the West as Glory get the points in Grand Final rematch

Perth Glory: 1 (Billy Mehmet 88’)
Brisbane Roar : 0
Crowd: 14,085 at Patersons Stadium, Perth

Brisbane Roar: Theo, Hingert, Smith, Jurman, Stefanutto, Paartalu, Broich, Nichols, Halloran, Berisha, Fitzgerald.
Substitutions: Murdocca for Nichols (72’), Dong-Hyun for Fitzgerald (77’).
Un-used Substitutes: Murdocca, Dong-Hyun.
Yellow Cards: Nichols, Stefanutto, Berisha.
Red Cards: Nil

Perth Glory: Vukovic, Risdon, Thwaite, van den Brink, Jamieson, Dodd, Liam Miller, Burns, Heffernan, McGarry, Smeltz.
Substitutions: Ward for Heffernan (70), Mehmet for Smeltz (82).
Un-used Substitutes: Spence, Pantelidis.
Yellow Cards: Miller, Burns, Dodd.
Red Cards: Nil

The season is underway and it wasn’t the result Brisbane was hoping for with a late Billy Mehmet header giving all 3 points to the hosts and in their minds at least some revenge for last April’s Grand Final defeat. The game was otherwise largely underwhelming with very few clear chances for either side. Their goal came from a Scott Jamieson goal with Billy Mehmet coming from deep and heading home between Smith and Jurman and into the far corner. Good cross, good header and not a lot that Brisbane could do about it.

The backdrop to this game was the whole ‘revenge’ thing and Glory fans played up to it with a bunch of banners both in and above the stadium during the match. Roar’s travelling fans too had their own reminder for Perth just in case they forgot who won. During the actual match there were a couple moments where things got a little heated- most notably when Burns hacked Berisha down and Miller slid into him knees-first which resulted in a bunch of handbags and Burns grabbing Nichols by the ear. Other than that it was rather tame considering all of the stuff we’d heard out of the west.

As for the actual match there weren’t a lot of chances in the game for either team and that’s largely down to both sides being well organised. Perth created a few half openings down the flanks but the service from the wide areas was always just a little off. Brisbane for their part tried to play through Perth and were reasonably successful with it- but there was a distinct lack if cohesion in the final 3rd.  Brisbane’s best chances fell to Nick Fitzgerald- who continually insisted on cutting inside onto his right foot rather than go down the outside and use his left.  I guess you can sum the lack of chances up like this- neither Shane Smeltz or Berisha had a clear goal scoring chance for the match.

Perth were obviously fired up for this game in front of their supporters and their defensive pressure was reasonably good. It wasn’t as good as Heart’s from Friday night but it was better than the grand final, and that forced some errors out of Brisbane today. Their lopsided midfield with Dodd pressing really high on the right and Heffernan slightly deeper on the left was also an interesting tactic and lead to Stefanutto having his worst game in an offensive sense for Brisbane.

The ‘new’ Brisbane of Rado Vidosic weren’t dissimilar to the Postecoglou version with the majority of the game plan being similar. They did however look to knock the ball forward quickly into wider areas today to exploit the pace of Halloran especially. For mine it was perhaps slightly overdone and really had no real effect with Jameison not really pushing on down the Glory left. For the most part however the played their now customary short passing build up from the back but they did try to get the ball forward earlier to exploit any space in the defence- either on the ground or aerially. They seem to be still figuring it all out atm and once they get it right it could be a devastating tactic.


Notes:

– Ben Halloran and Do Dong-Hyun made their Brisbane Roar debut today
– Mitch Nichols played his 100th A-League match for Brisbane Roar
–  Rado Vidosic is now on a 2 game losing streak in the A-League, and remains winless after 4 competitive games as boss.


Statistics:

Here’s the match stats from the excellent Fox Sports A-League Match Tracker.


Player ratings:

Brisbane:Theo 6, Hingert 6, Smith 6, Jurman 6, Stefanutto 6, Paartalu 6, Nichols 6, Broich 6, Halloran 6, Berisha 6, Fitzgerald 6, Murdocca 6, Dong-Hyun 6.

Perth: Vukovic 6, Risdon 6, Thwaite 6, van den Brink 6, Jamieson 6, Dodd 6, Burns 6, Miller 6, McGarry 6, Heffernan 6, Smeltz 6, Ward 6, Mehmet 7.

Up next:
Brisbane welcome former boss Ange Postecoglou and his Melbourne Victory team to Suncorp Stadium next Saturday evening in the home opening for the 2012-13 season.

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