Brisbane Roar Head Coach Warren Moon praised the way his players battled through the full 90 minutes of their fifth game in a fortnight following Wednesday’s goalless draw against Central Coast Mariners.
The Roar extended their amazing record of avoiding defeat against the Mariners to 20 matches but were unable to find a winner on the night, with Joey Champness going closest through a second-half shot that struck the crossbar.
“It’s a point, it’s a clean sheet,” Moon said. “Some encouraging performances today.
“It’s not what we wanted, but we’ll take it and move on and quickly regroup going into Sunday’s game against Adelaide.”
“We improved second half, we had to,” he added. “That’s pleasing. I don’t want to make excuses. I’m just pleased with the effort and what the boys did considering [the circumstances].
“We fought hard, we tried, we had moments, we had a few chances, we defended bravely, it just wasn’t to be.”
Danny Kim and young striker Cyrus Dehmie returned to A-League action as the latter made his first home appearance, with Moon satisfied with their input.
“They did very well,” he said. “I thought Danny came on and did a good job.
“It’s been difficult for Danny because he got an injury at a really bad time in our pre-season, then you’ve seen the emergence of Rahmat [Akbari] and Jesse [Daley] so he’s had to be patient and bide his time.
“I thought he came on tonight and did a very good job and was composed, so pleased for him.”
“We saw what Cyrus can do,” Moon said about the emerging teenage talent. “He showed glimpses of his ability and was a handful when he came on.
“On another night and a drier track he might have caused even more problems.”
Despite the intensive fixture schedule, and on a greasy surface dampened by a pre-game thunderstorm, Brisbane’s defence recorded yet another clean sheet, their fifth of the campaign.
“Another clean sheet, a strong defensive performance, I think we have the best defence in the league,” Moon said.
“I think for both sides you could see it was difficult tonight with the pitch. Again, that’s not an excuse. The rain came and it held up really well considering the amount of rain that fell with that storm before the match.
“But we got a game in and we were competitive and we tried and we had moments, but it’s a similar pattern for the last three games at home.
“I think that everyone who is here can see we’re trying but it’s just, obviously, the conditions probably weren’t best suited for the players we had to showcase their skills.”
Training has necessarily been limited owing to the short intervals, something the boss simplified humorously when asked about their current off-field routine.
“Sleep, recover, then get on the plane to Adelaide,” he laughed.
Sunday’s match against the Reds at Coopers Stadium precedes another away game against Newcastle Jets, before the team returns home on Tuesday, 25 May for the vital third match-up against leaders Melbourne City at Moreton Daily Stadium.
Images: Andrew Hudson Photography