Ten man Brisbane devastate Adelaide

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And so the fixture everyone had been waiting for all season long had arrived. The Round 13 Hyundai A-League match between the best two sides all year with 1st hosting 2nd at Suncorp Stadium.

The Roar made one change to the side that put four past Wellington Pheonix across the ditch with a late Ivan Franjic hamstring injury in warm up forcing Ange Postecoglou to bring in Milan Susak.

Adelaide came into the match without the injured Mathew Leckie who faces at least 10 weeks on the sideline with a ruptured medial ligament after last week’s typically physical encounter with Melbourne Victory at Etihad. The Reds also would also miss playmaker Marcos Flores.

The game settled almost immediately before the season high 13,248 srtong crowd with Brisbane Roar commencing their march in possession up and down the centre of Suncorp Stadium, patiently waiting for the opening and sitting in possession.

Thomas Broich had an early opening when he turned Adam Hughes, sitting in for the unwell Cameron Watson, inside out before unleashing a stinging drive that hit bodies and went wide.

Then Adelaide enjoyed some sustained possession, the outlet being Sergio van Dijk who found room on Brisbane’s right after a sumptuous flick from Lucas Pantelis gave the Dutch striker a chance to test Michael Theoklitos in goals in front of The Den.

As the half wore on the Roar began to look a little stretched at the back in the face of the many pacey and diminutive Reds midfielders who always break quickly, stick passes and make strides forward.

First, Iain Ramsay was found by Pantelis and in attempting to place the ball into the top corner.

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Unfortunately the young charger leant back at the crucial moment, putting it into The Den.

Second, Pantelis was found in more space on the left released by a measured slide rule pass. Pantelis squared it to Adelaide star Fabian Barberio who slapped a shot on goal low and to Theoklitos’ right.

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Theo was equal to the task getting down neatly to save and hold.

On 23 minutes and the Matt McKay show began. A short worked corner to the waiting Roar Captain and the shot just missed after fizzing over the bar.

On 28 minutes Brisbane had begun to dictate tempo more and begin to own the game. Effectively this came each time as a result of Broich finding more and more room down the Adelaide left. Broich McKay again whose shot was on target but didn’t have the legs. A clear opening for the Brisbane standard bearer.

On the half hour mark a pin point 40 yard pass from Matt Smith found McKay in behind. The playmaker’s first touch was exceptional and set up a cracking shot across the face of Eugene Galekovic in goals.

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Galekovic saved expertly and deserved the praise of his team mates.

As the match approached half time and in the wake of a decent appeal by the Reds for a handball in the box by Matt Smith, the Roar pushed on and found the lead. Passes were interchanged between Broich, McKay and Massimo Murdocca who played a first time no look pass to striker Reinaldo. The Brazilian had his back to goal and was being closely marked by Fyfe but managed to turn and shoot first time using his body well to create space. The shot nestled expertly low in the right hand corner of Adelaide’s goal. The deadlock was broken although the moment ruined somewhat by Andy Harper’s additional commentary of “the GPS getting a work out, that’s not a sports bra, those aren’t manboobs” after Reinaldo removed his jersey after scoring and duly receiving a yellow card for his troubles.

The Roar should have gone two up directly after the break when Broich released Reinaldo who scuffed his shot when solid contact left or right would have made the play.

The pivotal moment in the match occurred on 53 minutes when Reinaldo went from hero to villain after opening the scoring. The striker was brought to the ground roughly by Robbie Cornthwaite when he was in behind and Matthew Breeze went to his pocket and yellow carded the Reds beanpole defender. Reinaldo remonstrated that it should have been red and found himself in the referee’s book a second time and indeed he was served the red. The Roar would have to play most of the second half with ten men and after they had begun to dominate the game.

But the Roar were unfazed as the best 30 minute period in the Hyundai A-League unfolded for the table topping team from Suncorp.

Luke DeVere began the spectacular goal charge with a chipped a ball to Erik Paartalu who turned it inside to Matt Smith. The English defender slammed home into the roof of the goal and Brisbane went up two nil and an already sensational atmosphere exploded as the roof came off Suncorp.

Brisbane Roar went three nil up moments later as determination and valour with ten men showed as substitute Mitch Nichols linked up well with Kostas Barbarouses in a neat one two that unlocked the Reds defence. “Barbar” calmly slotted across the face of Galekovic’s goal. The Roar’s chemistry further on display as replays revealed that Erik Paartalu lifted his arms to celebrate in back play prior to the ball being struck by Barbarouses.

The night became magical as everything the Roar did turned to gold on a special night at Suncorp. A quick counter through DeVere who marched the length of the pitch before releasing Babarbouses whose swerving shot with the outside of his boot struck the post after a full strength Galekovic could only parry it before it finished in the top corner.

Brisbane were suddenly four nil to the good and the Reds were left in a daze looking to suture the haemorrhaging defence from being breached any further by ten men playing for their famous orange shirts and their city’s greatness.
It could very nearly have been made five nil when on loan Costa Rican Jean Carlos Solorzano made Galekovic work extremely hard in goals in preventing the evangelical enforcer whose strike was firmly hit and placed exquisitely.

When the final whistle came the home crowd would have been disappointed that a magical evening in Brisbane came to an end with their team marching on towards the 2010/2011 Hyundai A-League Premiership.

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