Roar potentially lose fourth defender since the transfer window

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After an early Dylan Wenzel-Halls wonder-goal, Brisbane Roar looked set for a feel-good A-League win against Western Sydney Wanderers.

But in a narrative which has become synonymous with the Roar’s 2018/19 season, it just wasn’t to be.

It was a game Brisbane quickly let slide – thanks mostly to a lackadaisical attitude on both sides of the ball – with Wanderers dominating play: converting four separate times throughout the 90 minutes.

Fraught for defensive options, Brisbane were forced to play Daniel Bowles – an ultra-orthodox centre back – at right back.

Adding insult to injury (quite literally), Bowles was forced off the pitch during the half time break, bringing Brisbane’s defensive injury woes to a critical state.

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“It was a forced change. As we were about to go out, the physio made the call that he wasn’t able to continue,” said Roar interim head coach Darren Davies, post-match.

“We’ve only got five defenders left. After the transfer window we’ve lost Luke DeVere, we’ve lost Jack Hingert, we’ve lost Dane Ingham. All season ending.

“We’ve literally got five defenders, including young Isaack Powell, so there’s very limited options. Hopefully Bowlesy hasn’t done anything too significant and he’ll be able to recover.”

If Bowles is ruled out, it will leave Brisbane with only Jacob Pepper, Ruon Tongyik, Stefan Nigro, Isaack Powell and Aaron Reardon in their defensive stocks.

With the midfield pairing of Matt McKay and Alex Lopez looking particular energy-deficient on the day, it’ll be interesting to see if the likes of Joe Caletti or Thomas Kristensen are re-enlisted to help screen the defence.

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“We defend as a team and we attack as a team – we’re a collective there. We need to defend better as a team,” Davies said.

“Championships are built on defence and keeping clean sheets, so that’s certainly an area where it’s obvious we need to improve.”

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Ben Paynter
Loves Brisbane. Loves a pint. Loves a 'Kevin Muscat Bad Tackle' YouTube compilation.