Brisbane Roar will face Central Coast Mariners at Industree Group Stadium this Saturday in the hopes of making it two wins on the bounce after the international break.
Central Coast Mariners have won their last three Isuzu UTE A-League matches against the Roar and are undefeated in their last six games at Industree Group Stadium.
Brisbane will be aiming for back-to-back wins for the first time this season, following their 1-0 victory over Western United at Kayo Stadium.
The Roar have scored 47% of goals from set pieces this 2022/2023 season, eight percentage points higher than any other team in the campaign.
In their last meeting, Brisbane Roar were beaten 1-2 at home after a penalty secured the win for the Mariners.
A corner from Central Coast’s James McGarry saw players scrambled for a touch, but it was the work of Marco Tulio getting the ball to the roof of the net in the 19th minute.
Just moments later, Jay O’Shea took a free-kick that went into the 18-yard box and saw goal scorer Tulio take Carlo Armiento out to give away a penalty to the Roar.
O’Shea stepped up for the penalty and calmly dispatched the ball into the bottom left of the goal to equalise the match 1-1.
A penalty was given to the Mariners after Scott Neville was believed to have clipped the back of Daniel Hall’s ankles in the box.
Beni Nkololo converted this penalty to the bottom right of goal to give Central Coast the 2-1 lead in the 69th minute.
Jay O’Shea is one away from reaching 100 appearances in the Isuzu UTE A-League, and his 285 chances created in his career is 30 more than any other players in the competition since making his debut on 13 October 2019.
Interim Head Coach Nick Green feels as though the international break provided the opportunity to embed his philosophy into the squad and is now focused on the challenge Central Coast presents.
“It was a good win a couple of weeks ago, the lads have enjoyed the last couple of weeks training, it’s given us an opportunity to feed a little bit more information into the lads and continue on the similar messages that we’ve been trying to give them,” Green said.
“Really positive around the place, but now all focus is on this weekend,” he added.
Green believes any game is winnable and hopes his squad can maintain a focus on themselves to keep up the consistency heading into the upcoming games.
“Any game is winnable, they’ve had a couple of weeks to prepare and get things right as well, so it can work both ways,” he said.
“What’s really important is we maintain the focus on us.”
“They’ve got threats and areas that they can potentially hurt us and other teams, but we feel like we can impose our mark upon them as well.”
The Mariners clash sees Noah Smith facing his old club and he is determined to win the three points against his former teammates.
“I’m a bit excited to go and see all the old boys, but still going there to do a job, get three points, continue our momentum to push through our finals run and make that top six,” Smith said.
“I’ve played with most of those boys for a year so I obviously understand how they play pretty well, so it should give me a bit of an advantage but as well, they’re a very strong team so I still expect a great challenge,” he added.
Smith believes it has been refreshing having Green come in as Interim Head Coach and is seeing the team’s hard work pay off after a stellar win against Western United.
“It’s been refreshing with Nick coming in, all the boys seem very motivated and happy,” Smith said.
“We’ve just been playing some good football, especially last week was one of our best performances under Nick so a lot of things are going right, so we just need to keep building on that.”
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