Round 7 Preview- Brisbane Roar vs. Melbourne City

**The following is a re-post of something I posted over at Football Central- originally dated 20/11/15

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Round 7 of the A-League sees Brisbane Roar host Melbourne City in a game which will see Brisbane boss John Aloisi go up against his former side for the first time.

Brisbane had to wait until the final 20 minutes to get the points against Perth on Sunday, but there was a lot to like about the Roar’s play as they controlled the game for large parts against the visiting Glory side.

The goal itself illustrated the amazing depth at John Aloisi’ disposal this season, with substitutes Javier Hervas and Henrique having an almost immediate impact off the subs bench.

Melbourne City meanwhile crashed to a 3-0 home loss to Western Sydney Wanderers, a performance leaving many to wonder if they are capable of competing without their talismanic midfielder Aaron Mooy.

City also are having to fight on with first choice central defensive pairing Aaron Hughes and Patrick Kisnorbo sidelined, resulting in youngsters Jack Clisby and Connor Chapman forming a makeshift partnership at the heart of defence.

Despite the negatives however, the Victorians had their moments in the game with Bruno Fornaroli a constant threat to defences while the wide players like Williams and Novillo are continuing to regain match sharpness.

The midfield battle in this encounter figures to be pivotal for both sides, with the Roar’s depth in quality shining out last week, while Aaron Mooy is comfortably the best Australian midfielder in the competition currently.

Another interesting battle will be on the left hand side of the Roar attack, with Thomas Broich expected to line up against former teammate Ivan Franjic for the first time. In years gone by they’ve been regarded as the best right back and left
winger in the country respectively, so it will be interesting to see who wins out between the two.

While Brisbane are on a run of three clean sheets in a row it’s hard not to see goals in this game, with both sides possession two of leagues top scorers going into the round in the shape of Brandon Borrello and Bruno Fornaroli.

Squads
Brisbane Roar 
3) Shane Stefanutto, 6) Jerome Polenz, 8) Steven Lustica, 9) Jamie Maclaren, 10) Henrique, 13) Jade North, 14) Daniel Bowles, 15) James Donachie, 16) Devante Clut, 17) Matt McKay, 18) Javier Hervas, 19) Jack Hingert, 21) Jamie Young, 22) Thomas Broich, 23) Dimitri Petratos, 28) Brandon Borrello, 36) Andre Jannese.
**Two to be omitted.

Melbourne City
1) Thomas Sorensen, 4) Connor Chapman, 5) Ivan Franjic, 6) Erik Paartalu, 7) Corey Gameiro, 8) Aaron Mooy, 9) Harry Novillo, 15) David Williams, 16) Jason Trifiro, 18) Paulo Retre, 19) Ben Garuccio, 20) Tando Velaphi, 21) Stefan Mauk, 22) Jack Clisby, 23) Bruno Fornaroli, 25) Jacob Melling, 30) Hernan Espindola, 34) Stefan Zinni.
**Two to be omitted.

John Aloisi will likely make two changes to his starting side with Matt McKay and Jamie Maclaren likely to start in place of Steven Lustica and Nicholas D’Agostino, although how they recover from midweek international flights will be a factor.

Assuming they are ready to go, John Aloisi will have an interesting selection dilemma facing him in regards to his substitutes bench. Devante Clut, Javier Hervas and Henrique all performed well and contributed to winning the game against Perth, but one will likely miss out tomorrow night with Lustica a certainty to take one of the four outfield bench spots alongside defender James Donachie.

After the combination for the goal between Hervas and Henrique, it’s likely that young Clut will be the player to make way, a decision which is perhaps a bit harsh but illustrates the incredible depth Brisbane possess this season.


Expected Brisbane XI

Young, Hingert, North, Bowles, Stefanutto, Corona, Petratos, McKay, Broich, Borrello, Maclaren.
Substitutes: Jannese, Donachie, Lustica, Hervas, Henrique.
Omitted: Polenz, Clut.

Like Brisbane, a lot of City’s decisions will be based around the fitness of players returning from overseas, but assuming Mooy is ready to go it’s a no brainer that he will return to the starting line-up.

Ivan Franjic is also likely to make his first appearance for City in the A-League against his former side on Friday night with Paolo Retre the man likely to make way, although there’s a good chance the Socceroo full-back won’t see out the 90 minutes as he works his way back from injury.

Elsewhere, van’t Schip is likely to go with the weapons which have done damage in the league this season like Bruno Fornaroli and Harry Novillo, coupled with players who’ve been pivotal in wins over the Roar in the past like David Williams and Jacob Melling.


Expected Melbourne XI

Sorensen, Franjic, Chapman, Clisby, Garuccio, Paartalu, Mooy, Melling, Novillo, Williams, Fornaroli.
Substitutes: Velaphi, Retre, Mauk, Espindola, Gameiro.
Omitted: Trifiro, Zinni.
Recent form
Brisbane: WDWLW
Melbourne: LWLWL


Top Scorer

Brisbane: Brandon Borrello (4)
Melbourne: Bruno Fornaroli (5)


Stats and Figures

– Should Andre Jannese get any game time, he will become the 116th player to represent Brisbane Roar.


All-time record against Melbourne City

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