Brisbane open home campaign in style

Captains goal (Getty images)

Captains goal (Getty images)

Brisbane Roar (4) Smith (37’), Henrique (39’), North (44’), Broich (80’)
Sydney FC (0)
21,841 @ Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane.

Brisbane: Theo, Hingert, North, Smith, Stefanutto, Brattan, McKay, Miller, Franjic, Broich, Berisha.
Substitutions: Henrique for Berisha (25’), Brown for Brattan (74’), Petratos for McKay (81’).
Unused Substitutes: Acton, Donachie.
Yellow Cards: Hingert.
Red Cards: Nil

Sydney: Janjetovic, Bojic, Ryall, Petkovic, Warren, Carle, Abbas, Thompson, Chianese, Garcia, Del Piero.
Substitutions: Emerton for Del Piero (29’), Grant for Thompson (46’), Mallia for Bojic (71’)
Unused Substitutes: Necevski, Jurman
Yellow Cards: Abbas, Warren
Red Cards: Nil

Home openers are fun aren’t they? Last year it was a 5-0 win against Ange Postecoglou and Melbourne Victory, this year it’s another big win against a rival and former mentor as Frank Farina’s Sydney FC were on the end of a 4-0 drubbing.

The game can best be summed up by the fact that Sydney opted to deploy very little pressure on Brisbane in the defensive half of the pitch allowing Brisbane to play out as they saw fit. The defending was also extremely poor from the Sky Blues, with Henrique’s goal a prime example of some shocking defending. Brisbane could have, and arguably should have scored at least 6 on the night.

Sydney’s other problem was Nick Carle as a holding midfielder; while it works reasonably well when they can get him on the ball, he just doesn’t have the defensive skills required to play as a #6 and Brisbane exploited that, along with their poor defensive positioning as a whole. Conventional wisdom would have seen Emerton playing deeper, with Carle playing further up the park in the absence of Del Piero, but Farina opted against it, and it cost him.

Brisbane for their part looked impressive, with some confident, slick passing reminiscent of the championship winning years. One slight concern was the relative anonymity of new signing Liam Miller, who had another quiet game. Expectations were high for the Irish import, and he’ll need to improve as he figures to be a vital cog in the side this year. It was also good to see fellow off season recruit Dimi Petratos get a run, and of course Matt McKay. Deep down I think we all expected him to play, but im not sure I expected him to play 80minutes and be close to best on the park with all the travelling he’s done. It was some return from the former skipper.

Im sure everyone’s seen the goals by now so I wont both running through those, but it was nice to see Henrique score. The goal should be a big confidence boost for the oft-injured Brazilian, who could be needed in the coming weeks due to the injury to Berisha. Speaking of Bes, he’s due to undergo scans today, and is expected to miss Friday’s trip to Victory. More on that later in the week if and when it’s confirmed he’s out.

Stats:

Team Stats (The Score)

Team Stats (The Score)

Up Next:
Brisbane head south to Melbourne for the first of 3 trips to the Victorian capital this campaign. They’ll face Melbourne Victory on Friday night, where they’ll be reunited with some former friends. Mitch Nichols and Kosta Barbarouses will definitely feature for the Victory, and it could also be a farewell party for former Brisbane boss Ange Postecoglou as he’s expected to be named Socceroos boss this week.

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