Solorzano strike secures point

Costa Rican striker Jean Carlos Solorzano has come off the bench to earn his side a 1-1 draw with the Newcastle Jets in an entertaining encounter at Energy Australia Stadium.

Costa Rican striker Jean Carlos Solorzano has come off the bench to earn his side a 1-1 draw with the Newcastle Jets in an entertaining encounter at Energy Australia Stadium.

Injected into the game by Brisbane Roar coach Ange Postecoglou with half an hour to play, Solorzano again demonstrated his predatory skills with a true poacher-s effort inside the six yard box.

Both sides had free-kicks in dangerous positions in the early minutes, however neither side was able to test the goalkeeper.

Newcastle were dangerous early, pushing Brisbane deep into their own defensive third; stand-in skipper Michael Theoklitos forced to make a save with his feet when Marko Jesic was clean through on goal.

Matt Smith was then forced to clear the danger in the box from an Ali Abass shot on goal after the ball had bounced around in the Roar penalty area for what seemed an eternity.

Brisbane went within inches of going behind just a minute later when Theoklitos mis-controlled a Luke DeVere back pass, Francis Jeffers pouncing on his mistake, but the former England international couldn-t find an effort on goal and Brisbane scrambled to clear the danger again.

The close call seemed to spark Brisbane and they began to push forward in numbers, spreading the ball wide to look for gaps in the Jets defence.

A long ball out from the back nearly caught Brisbane out with Jeffers again through on goal, but Theoklitos was out quickly to the edge of the box to stop the Newcastle frontman from getting a clear sight on goal.

Immediately up the other end Reinaldo had a strong effort well saved by Ben Kennedy following some good work through the midfield by Mitch Nichols.

Theoklitos was called into action again on 24 minutes as Newcastle moved the ball from one side of the pitch to the other with the goalkeeper needing a fingertip save to keep the ball out from a curling Kantarovski effort.

Brisbane nearly took the lead in fortuitous circumstances on 32 minutes when a ripping, curling Thomas Broich free-kick was nearly turned into his own net by Kantarovski.

Reinaldo pounced on a defensive error in the Newcastle midfield, creating room for himself to bear down on goal but again Kennedy stood tall to keep his effort out of the goal.

However, despite all the action there were no goals before the break.

Brisbane started the second half brightly, but it was still a very open contest with both sides looking to push forward at every opportunity.

Newcastle took the lead following a series of corners after 53 minutes when Kantarovski meet the ball with his head on the near post with Theoklitos seemingly being blocked from getting to the ball by Jesic.

Nichols nearly had a goal his enterprising work deserved when the ball fell to him on the edge of the box.

Despite slipping over, the midfielder smashed a left foot shot at goal that had Kennedy beaten but bounced off the post and away to safety.

Brisbane tried hard to get themselves back into the game, but in pushing forward they left room at the back which Newcastle exploited at every opportunity.

With 10 minutes left on the clock Brisbane did get the equaliser they-d been searching for and it was once again Nichols who was the architect.

The laconic midfielder played the perfect ball through Franjic on the right and the right back played another perfect ball across the six yard box for Costa Rican substitute Jean Carlos Solorzano to tap home on the far post.

Newcastle came within inches of regaining the lead with three minutes left in regulation time when he thundered a shot at goal, but Theoklitos got a finger on the effort to push it onto the post and Franjic cleared the danger.

The final ten minutes were a flurry of activity from one end of the park to the other, but neither side was able to find a late winner.

A clearly delighted Brisbane coach hailed the spirit of his side as they dug deep to stretch their unbeaten run to 11 matches.

“It was a tough game obviously, but you-ve just got to love the boys- spirit,” Postecoglou said.

“It was an easy one for us to maybe lay down a little bit, it was a pretty physical game and we-ve had a hard slog recently.

“You got to love their spirit, they never chucked it in and we got the point.”

Postecoglou was particularly happy with the impact Solorzano had off the bench, with his third goal securing points for the Roar for the third time this season.

“He gives us something different for sure,” he said.

“All his goals have been in the six yard box and he-s been waiting to pounce on things.

“The goals have all been pretty vital, they-ve either gotten us a point or all three points.”

Newcastle Jets 1 (Ben KANTAROVSKI 53-)
Brisbane Roar (Jean Carlos SOLORZANO 80-)
EnergyAustralia Stadium, Newcastle
Peter Green

Newcastle Jets squad: 1. Ben KENNEDY (gk), , 3. Adam D-APUZZO, 4. Nikolai TOPOR STANLEY, 5. Ljubo MILICEVIC (C), 6. Ben KANTAROVSKI, 7. Kasey WEHRMAN, 10. Ruben ZADKOVICH, 11. Tarek ELRICH, 18. Marko JESIC, 19. Ali ABASS 24. Francis Jeffers (14. Labinot HALITI 68-)

Substitutes not used: 13. Sasho PETROVSKI, 22.Kaz PATAFTA, 40. Matthew NASH

Yellow cards: Ruben ZADKOVICH (59-), Ljubo MILICEVIC (64-)

Red cards: Nil

Brisbane Roar squad: 1. Michael THEOKLITOS (gk), 2. Matt SMITH, 3. Luke DEVERE, 5. Ivan FRANJIC, 6. Erik PAARTALU, 7. Kosta BARBAROUSES (14. Rocky VISCONTE 85-), 8. Massimo MURDOCCA (9. Jean Carlos SOLORZANO 62-), 11. REINALDO, 17. Mitch NICHOLS, 22. Thomas BROICH, 23. Milan SUSAK (12. Matt MUNDY 62-).

Substitutes not used: 20. Andrew REDMAYNE (gk)

Yellow cards: Nil

Red cards: Nil