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Brisbane Roar FC
Brisbane Roar FC
|A. L. Fondre||57'|
The Sydney FC juggernaut rolls on, and this time it’s the Brisbane Roar who hope to avoid a trampling on Friday evening at 7:30pm (AEDT). Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match.
Sydney FC made short work of Melbourne Victory in Round 16, making their heated foe look second rate as they opened up a ten-point gap at the top of the table.
It was an eventful game for German playmaker Alexander Baumjohann, who set up a goal, scored another and got red-carded. The front two of Adam Le Fondre and Kosta Barbarouses scored the other two goals in a 3-0 rout of Victory in Melbourne to send a chill down the spines of the chasing pack.
While Sydney will be without Baumjohann this week, they will be buoyed by the announcement of another two years with key midfielder Luke Brattan. With Brandon O’Neill leaving town for Korea during this transfer window, Brattan looms as a key figure if Sydney are to feature heavily in the finals.
Sydney’s opponents this week the Brisbane Roar are experiencing a mini-renaissance under Robbie Fowler. After a poor start they have won three of the last five games and not lost in that time. Last week’s 1-0 win against Central Coast was ugly, and took a bit of luck (an own goal), but Fowler’s men have found ways to scrape past their opponents lately.
That win saw Brisbane temporarily move into the top six before dropping to seventh by the end of the round. They are now two points behind fifth-place Adelaide United in a finals race where three teams will battle for fifth and sixth position behind a top four that are all but assured of a finals spot.
Brisbane aren’t a fashionable team – they have the fourth fewest goals in the league – but they don’t concede many and find ways to scrap results out. This week they’re boosted by the return of the versatile Aiden O’Neill from Olyroos duty to join recent signings Scott McDonald (Western United) and Corey Brown (Victory).
That leaves Brisbane at mostly full strength this week, which is an enviable position for any club more than halfway through the season.
Sydney lose Baumjohann but welcome back Trent Buhagiar from the Olyroos. Expect to see Anthony Caceres step in for Baumjohann, but Steve Corica will be tempted to give Buhagiar solid minutes in this game to see what he’s capable of.
This should be easy for Sydney. Brisbane are getting results but Sydney are a class above this season and I can’t imagine the Brisbane defence keeping a clean sheet here.
Sydney FC 2-0.
Kick-off: 7:30pm (AEDT)
Venue: Netstrata Jubilee Stadium
TV: Fox Sports
Online: Kayo Sports, Foxtel Go, MyFootballLive app
Odds: Sydney FC $1.53, Brisbane Roar $6.50, draw $4.50