For the first half of Brisbane’s clash with Western Sydney it looked like the decision to play Massimo Maccarone in a deeper playmaking role was a masterstroke from John Aloisi.

The Italian veteran was in the thick of the action, continuously receiving the ball in between the lines, something we haven’t seen since his arrival in Brisbane.

With Maccarone deployed as a No.10 facilitator it seemed attractive, free-flowing football had returned to Suncorp Stadium and then within in a blink of an eye, it was gone.

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Out of seemingly nothing Oriol Riera smashed home a go-ahead goal against the run of play whilst just seconds later key midfielder Thomas Kristensen was forced to leave the game with precautionary hamstring soreness.

Aloisi touched on the shift in the game’s momentum post-match, pinpointing the opportunities his side failed to take during the first half showing.

“We were in total control that first half, we were actually playing well, we were playing through them quite easy and you know, we gave away a poor goal,” he said.

“We showed last week how we can defend those balls, those crosses, space doesn’t score, players do so when you’re in there you have to mark and do better and that’s the disappointing thing because we went in at 2-0 at half-time and they virtually only went up twice and we gave them two easy goals.

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“It didn’t help when Thomas Kristensen went off as well because then we had to reshuffle, change our back four but you know even with ten, eleven players out I’m disappointed because we should’ve still won that game with the way we were playing in the first half but those errors killed us.”

Brisbane must now refocus for a massive fixture against a Sydney FC side that is playing ruthless football from the top of the A-League ladder.

The Kristensen injury further complicates matters with none of the injury-listed Roar brigade set to return on Monday night.

Aloisi however remains assured that the game against the Sky Blues is no different from any other despite the injury headaches in Brisbane.

“Look every game for us has been important, its just been a difficult period cause of the way we’re down on numbers but like I said to the players then, even with all those players out we still should’ve actually been in front in the first half and not behind, but we can’t then start doing our own thing because we want to chase the game,” he said.

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“So we know this game we might not have as many players back but against Newcastle we’ll have some more and then probably the next game we’ll have some more.

“It’s a period that’s been difficult because of the injuries but we’ll get through it and make sure that we keep pushing because look – we know that when you win a couple of games you can really go up the ladder.

“But at the moment we’re just trying to take it game by game and not try and look so much that we’re getting too far behind because if you do that then you’re just going to start to panic.”

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Josh is a student journalist at the University of Queensland currently covering Brisbane Roar's 17/18 season.