ALM R3 Wrap: Wellington Phoenix 5-2 Brisbane Roar

Brisbane Roar were handed their first defeat of the 2023/24 Isuzu UTE A-League season on Saturday afternoon, going down 5-2 at the hands of Wellington Phoenix at Sky Stadium.

Goals from Florin Berenguer and Nikola Mileusnic weren’t enough as an Oskar Zawada hat-trick coupled with strikes from Tim Payne and Bozhidar Kraev sent Phoenix at least temporarily top of the table.

Roar opened the scoring inside a minute for the second week in a row when Berenguer brought down a Joe Caletti ball on the edge of the area before slamming a finish into the bottom corner.

The Frenchman’s first goal for Brisbane, which came after just 32 seconds goes down in the record books as the club’s fastest ever Isuzu UTE A-League Men’s goal.

Despite Roar’s strong start the home side fought their way back into the contest through goals from Payne and Zawada to lead at the break.

Mileusnic drew Roar level eight minutes into the second half with a booming finish on the half-volley that found it’s way into the back of the net via a deflection for what was his second goal in as many weeks.

However, Roar’s parity was short lived with Kraev reinstating the hosts lead in the 58th minute, before a Zawada header doubled their advantage just five minutes later.

Wellington’s Polish frontman went on to complete his hat-trick with a first-time finish at the back post in stoppage time to round out the scoring on a difficult afternoon across the ditch.

Saturday’s defeat was the Roar’s first hiccup of new campaign after going undefeated through their first two games of the season with a draw and a win, continuing a strong start to Aloisi’s tenure following on from a run to the Australia Cup final.

Attention now turns to another road trip for Aloisi’s side, who take on Central Coast Mariners at Industree Group Stadium next Sunday afternoon.

Isuzu UTE A-League Men 2023/24 – Round 3: Wellington Phoenix v Brisbane Roar
Sky Stadium, Wellington
Saturday, 4 November

Wellington Phoenix – 5 (Tim PAYNE 24’, Oskar ZAWADA 32’ 63’ 92’, Bozhidar KRAEV 58’)
Brisbane Roar – 2 (Florin BERENGUER 1’, Nikola MILEUSNIC 53’)