Golgol Mebrahtu’s maiden Brisbane Roar goal earned his new side a solid 1-1 draw against Wellington Phoenix in rainy, windy conditions at McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle on Sunday.
Phoenix scored the only goal of the first half through the boot of Tomer Hemed but were overwhelmed by the visitors in the second stanza.
Eight years and five days since he last scored in the A-League, striker Mebrahtu made the pressure count by opening his account for the Roar in the 86th minute with his first touch since being subbed into the fray.
After full-time, Head Coach Warren Moon was frank in his appraisal of the contest as a whole.
“There’s no hiding behind the fact that we weren’t good enough in the first half,” he said. “We had to change things and get into difficult positions on a heavy track.
“In all the games we’ve been behind we haven’t found the way to come back, so [the equalising goal] was another little step for us.”
When asked if the result will have an impact on the positivity and attitude of the team, Moon was quietly optimistic that will be the case.
“Things can change very quickly, and it only takes one result, one game to change things and we have the ability in this group to go on a run again,” he said.
Among the game’s significant moments was the A-League debut of Academy product Cyrus Dehmie, who entered the game in the 72nd minute and looked lively in attack.
The youngster came on for striker Masato Kudo, who registered an encouraging first start for the Club.
Roar now return to Moreton Daily Stadium on Saturday, 27 March for a home game against Western United looking to avenge the narrow Matchweek 12 defeat against the same opponents.
Wellington Phoenix – Hemed – 42’ 1-0
Phoenix play the ball in from the left. Hemed is in the right place at the right time to take advantage of a somewhat fortuitous bounce.
Brisbane Roar – Mebrahtu – 86’ 1-1
Macaulay Gillesphey fires in a brilliant cross behind the backline. Mebrahtu bobs up at the back post and scores with his first touch after coming off the bench.
A-League 2021 Matchweek 13: Wellington Phoenix vs Brisbane Roar
McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle
Sunday 21st March
Wellington Phoenix 1 (Hemed 42’)
Brisbane Roar 1 (Mebrahtu 86’)