Roar & Sky Blues share points in Friday night thriller


A thrilling encounter has miraculously finished scoreless as Brisbane Roar and Sydney FC shared the points at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night. PHOTOS: Pat Kearney

A match that lacked goals was far from eventless as both sides mustered an incredible 16 shots on target, combined with some fine goalkeeping, kept the scores locked at 0-0.

Thomas Broich praised the quality of football on display and says the performance is a sign that the Roar are more than capable of matching the league leaders.

“The football played was outstanding and that’s what we want to see – an entertaining brand of football,” he said.

“We played against a team that’s flying high and we really took the game to them. We’re getting stronger and stronger every week.”

A positive start from the hosts harvested the game’s first chance as Jamie Maclaren looked to squeeze the ball inside the near post only to be stopped by a strong hand from Danny Vukovic.

Scintillating counter-attacking football began with Thomas Broich deep in his own half and ended with Dimtiri Petratos again calling Vukovic into action as the Roar shot out of the blocks into a high-tempo opening period.

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Winger Tommy Oar was in sparkling form in the opening stages and was at the base of a number of Brisbane’s trips into the attacking third before having a chance of his own, once again forcing a strong save from the Sky Blues stopper.

Jordy Buijs had the Sky Blues best chance of the opening half from a free kick just outside Brisbane’s 18-yard box, forcing a lunging low save from Michael Theo.

Theo was the centre of attention again soon after, denying Filip Holosko who had found a pocket of space on the edge of the area.

Both sides had late flurries as half-time drew near but neither were able to break the deadlock in the opening 45 minutes.

A heroic goal-line block from Jack Hingert in the first minute of the second half denied Milos Ninkovic from opening the scoring as the visitors started strongly with a period of sustain pressure.

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As the hour mark drew close, Thomas Broich came within inches of an opener with a close-range header than cannoned into the bar and back into play via a reaction save from Vukovic.

Brisbane continued to ask questions of the Sky Blues defence as lethal crossing from Tommy Oar brought about a number of nervous moments for the Sky Blues back four.

Nifty footwork and quick play from the Roar brought about a number of strong challenges from the Sky Blues as both Rhyan Grant and Josh Brillante earned cautions from referee Peter Green in quick succession.

A lunging tackle on substitute Bernie Ibini also earned Roar fullback Jack Hingert a yellow card on 75 minutes.

Filip Holosko blew a golden chance to give the Sky Blues a late lead, navigating through loose Roar defending only to fire an open header wide of Theo’s net.

Theo then produced a miraculous save to deny Alex Brosque, instinctively stretching out his right arm to scoop a deft goal-bound touch into play before comfortably dealing with the follow up. 

Last-gasp flurries from the Roar weren’t enough to break the deadlock as both sides take a deserved point from an incredible game. 

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Man of the Match

Brisbane Roar goalkeeper MICHAEL THEO: “It’s a great point because Sydney’s the in-form team and they came here with a lot of confidence.

“We’ve had three matches in six days so the boys dug deep. To lose would have been bitterly disappointing but we’ve taken a point and now we move on.”

On THAT save in the second half: “It was goalkeeper instinct to stick my hand out and thankfully I was able to get a hand on it and then deal with the second ball.”

Quote unquote

Brisbane Roar Head Coach JOHN ALOISI: “We created good chances and forced some good saves out of Danny Vukovic but they caused us issues on set piece and counter attacks too.

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“We dealt with it for most of the night but all-in-all we’re disappointed to have not taken the three points.

“In our build-up phase we didn’t get caught much, it’s more that we got caught a few times when we had a chance up the other end.”

On Wednesday’s AFC Champions League playoff match: “It’s important to try get through but we also worry about the [Hyundai] A-League. It doesn’t give us much time in the turnaround before Melbourne City so I may have to make sure some players are fresh for that game.”

What’s next?

The Roar travel to China for a do-or-die AFC Asian Champions League Playoff against Carlos Tevez’s Shanghai Shenhua on Tuesday, 7 February (9:45pm KO QLD time) before consecutive Hyundai A-League road trips against Melbourne City and Perth Glory.

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Match Stats

Hyundai A-League Round 18, Brisbane Roar v Sydney FC, Friday, 3 February at Suncorp Stadium

Brisbane Roar 0

Sydney FC 0

Half-Time: 0-0

Crowd: 13,095