ALM R23 Preview: Western Sydney Wanderers vs Brisbane Roar

Brisbane Roar are on the road against Western Sydney Wanderers in Isuzu UTE A-League Round 23 action at CommBank Stadium on Friday night.

Ruben Zadkovich’s side start the weekend in eighth position on 26 points, eight shy of the sixth placed Wanderers and knowing three points are crucial if they’re to keep their finals hopes alive.

Roar come into Friday’s match after suffering a 1-0 away defeat at the hands of league leaders, Wellington Phoenix in their last outing.

Despite their 19 efforts on goals Roar were unable to find a breakthrough against a resolute Phoenix side who took all three points thanks to Bozhidar Kraev’s second minute strike.

The Wanderers snapped a three-match winless run with back-to-back wins in their last two outings including a 3-1 victory over Macarthur on Monday afternoon.


“That mentality has been great I think l you saw last week against Wellington we’re going away from home to the league leaders and we’re taking the game to them and that’s important.”

“I think that’s the Brisbane Roar spirit, that’s the DNA of this football club, that’s where the success came with that type of mentality and attitude and we’ve got to get back to that so we’ll continue to try and build on our positive performances and try and turn them into results.” – Ruben Zadkovich

READ MORE: Zadkovich previews Wanderers clash

“It’s going to be a battle and I think we’re expecting more of the same on Friday so we need to show up and compete and really give it a good crack.” – Macklin Freke

READ MORE: Freke Previews Wanderers test


Marco Rojas is in contention to return for Roar in Friday’s match after missing last weekend’s trip to Wellington with a hamstring injury.

Marco Rudan has named an unchanged squad from the Wanderers side that defeated Macarthur on Monday.

Brisbane Roar squad:  1. Macklin FREKE (GK), 3. Corey BROWN, 5. Tom ALDRED (C), 7. Florin BERENGUER, 8. Jonas MARKOVSKI, 10. Nikola MILEUSNIC, 11. Jez LOFTHOUSE, 12. Taras GOMULKA, 13. Henry HORE, 16. Thomas WADDINGHAM, 19. Jack HINGERT, 20. Marco ROJAS, 21. Antonee BURKE-GILROY, 23. Keegan JELACIC, 26. Jay O’SHEA, 27. Kai TREWIN, 29. Matt ACTON (GK), 32. James NIKOLOVSKI,  35. Louis ZABALA, 99. Ayom MAJOK

Ins: N/A
Outs: N/A
Unavailable 2. Scott NEVILLE, 6. Joe CALETTI

Western Sydney Wanderers squad: 1.Daniel MARGUSH (GK), 2.Gabriel CLEUR, 5.Sonny KITTEL, 6. MARCELO, 7.Dylan PIEIRAS, 10. Milos NINKOVIC, 14.Nicolas MILANOVIC, 16.Tom BEADLING, 17.Lachlan BROOK, 19.Jack CLISBY, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (GK), 21.Jorrit HENDRIX, 25.Joshua BRILLANTE, 26.Brandon BORRELLO, 29.Dylan SCICLUNA, 31.Aidan SIMMONS, 32.Nathaneal BLAIR, 33.Alex BONETIG, 44.Nathan BARRIE

Ins: N/A
Outs: N/A


Roar and Wanderers played out a pulsating 2-2 draw when they went head-to-head in the reverse fixture at Suncorp Stadium in December.

Roar raced out to a two-goal lead thanks to strikes from Nikola Mileusnic and Jack Hingert inside the opening 15 minutes before the visitors fought back to take a share of the spoils through goals from Nicolas Milanovic and Marcus Antonsson in the second half.

Played: 36
Brisbane Roar wins:13
Western Sydney Wanderers wins: 11
Draws: 12

KEY STATS Brought to you by Opta

●  Each of the last four A-League Men games between Western Sydney Wanderers FC and Brisbane Roar FC have ended in a draw on the day while the Wanderers have won only one of their last 11 games against the Roar (D6 L4).

●  Western Sydney Wanderers FC are winless in their last four A-League Men games at CommBank Stadium (D1 L3), conceding an average of three goals per game across that stretch; though, they have scored at least one goal in each of their last five games at the venue.

●  Western Sydney Wanderers FC have scored 37 goals in the 2023/24 A-League Men season, 5.3 more than their Expected Goals value suggests – the best positive differential of any team in the competition; Brisbane Roar FC (37 goals, -0.98) have underperformed against their xG by the smallest margin of any of the six teams in the campaign to have done so.

●  Brisbane Roar FC have made 14 sequences of 10+ passes per game in the 2023/24 A-League Men season, the most of any team in the competition; indeed, the Roar’s 4.02 passes per sequence is the second most of any team in the campaign (Wellington Phoenix – 4.06).

●  Brisbane Roar FC’s Jay O’Shea (2,120) and Western Sydney Wanderers FC’s Marcelo (1,842) have had the most and third most touches respectively of any players in the 2023/24 A-League Men season (Scott Wootton – 1,914).

●  Thomas Waddingham (Brisbane Roar FC) has scored five goals in his last five starting appearances in the A-League Men; although, he didn’t score a goal in his only career appearance against Western Sydney Wanderers FC in the competition (1 December 2023).

●  Antonee Burke-Gilroy (49) is one away from his 50th appearance in the A-League Men.

Isuzu UTE A-League Men 2023/24 – Round 23: Western Sydney Wanderers v Brisbane Roar
CommBank Stadium, Parramatta
Friday, 3 April (6:45pm KO)