Roar And Strikers Share Derby Spoils
Words: Michael Flynn, Brisbane Roar
Image: Keith Eigeland, Football Queensland
A depleted Brisbane Roar NYL held out a fast-finishing Brisbane Strikers to earn a 1-1 draw on Sunday afternoon in a hard-fought derby clash at Perry Park.
Roar’s Shannon Brady broke a first-half stalemate shortly after the restart before Matt Thurtell secured Strikers a share of the points with 18 minutes remaining.
Roar went into the match without several key players including captain Ben Litfin, Devante Clut and Jai Ingham and few genuine chances were created by either side in the opening exchanges.
Sam Sibatuara fashioned the only shot on target in the opening half hour when he forced Strikers goalkeeper David Chambers to tip the ball around the post eight minutes into the contest.
Strikers produced a scattering of half chances as the half drew to a close before an inspired piece of play from Dan Partridge dispossessed Roar goalkeeper Denver Crickmore – the midfielder squared to Thurtell only for the Strikers’ marksman to see his shot cleared off the line by Cameron Crestani.
Further opportunities fell to Thurtell and Chris Maher immediately prior to the break, however both blazed wide of the target on the angle.
An impressive run from Brady four minutes after the restart earned his side the opener after he shuffled the ball wide only to accept the return pass then turn and beat Chambers with a low finish amidst traffic.
Possession remained evenly split but Strikers continued to create the better of the chances as Thurtell twice volleyed over the bar after being found by left winger King immediately prior to the hour.
Sibatuara denied Jason Shade’s effort at the far post after Crickmore misjudged a King cross on 67 minutes before King missed the target from 20 yards from the resulting corner kick.
Strikers eventually levelled terms on 72 minutes when Thurtell and substitute midfielder Michael Angus combined sharply to work space in the penalty area – the striker’s first attempt from ten yards was parried by Crickmore and fell fortuitously for Thurtell to steer home on the second attempt.
Momentum stayed with Strikers but they spurned several chances– Shade heading over the bar from five yards after being found by David Salin and Maher blazing high from distance.
Strikers, in the unfamiliar role of visitors at the ground they share with Roar, continued to create space with tight passing around the box for no reward.
Roar’s Mitch Hore showed sharp ball control to create space on 87 minutes only to see his shot from the top of the box deflected wide in the host’s last genuine attempt.
Strikers twice missed the chance to clinch the three points in injury time as Scot Coulson nodded over from King’s cross before driving another shot wide a minute later.
The result sees Roar without a win from their last two fixtures but moving up to third place ahead of Olympic FC while Strikers remain seventh place in the standings.
Brisbane Roar NYL 1 (Shannon BRADY 49’)
Brisbane Strikers 1 (Matt THURTELL 72’)