Roar coach Mike Mulvey believes Besart Berisha is in better mental shape this week to torment the Wanderers defence in Sunday’s Hyundai A-League Grand Final.
Brisbane Roar coach Mike Mulvey believes star striker Besart Berisha is in better mental shape this week to torment the Wanderers defence in Sunday-s Hyundai A-League Grand Final.
Sunday-s showpiece is the final game in Roar colours for the talismanic Albanian international.
He joins Melbourne Victory next season after three fabulous years in the Queensland capital.
Ironically, last week he helped knock his new employers out of the A-League finals with a cracking goal in the 1-0 win.
And it's this that has helped him in his preparation for the biggest game of the year, said Mulvey.
“I think perhaps some of the anguish that he may-ve been feeling has been alleviated because he-s played against Melbourne Victory, the team-s he-s going to next years, and scored the winning goal,” Mulvey said at the official pre-match press conference.
“But as I-ve said all along, Besart is a true professional, a great guy and he fits ito our culture beautifiully. And he wants to win things.
“So here-s the platform for him tomorrow.”
Roar skipper Matt Smith emphasised that nothing had changed with Berisha since the deal to Victory was announced some four months ago.
“He-s still a Brisbane Roar player,” said Smith.
“He-ll be blue next year but he-s orange for the moment. That-s as simple as I can put it.
“He wants to win like every player on the pitch tomorrow.”
Smith described the Albanian international as the best striker in the A-League. “We-ve seen his brilliance time and time again. His record speaks for itself.”
Meanwhile, the Wanderers player who is set to come up against Berisha wasn-t giving too much away to the media.
“I think I-ve answered this question a million times this week. They-re all saying how are you going to contain Berisha and Broich," said Wanderers defender Nikolai Topor Stanley.
“Obviously we know they-re quality players and we have respect for them.
“My answer-s not going to be different. It-s more about what we do on the park and our performance.”
Aside from Berisha, fellow striker Dimi Petratos, whose been under an injury cloud since last week, was given straight line running at training on Saturday morning.
“It was a safer bet than to do multi-directional running, because he-s got a big game to play tomorrow,” explained Mulvey.
The Roar coach cut a relaxed figure at Saturday-s official pre-match press conference and said the philosophy used all year should stand them in good stead on what-s been dubbed OrangeSunday3.
“We don-t need to do anything different to what we-ve been doing all season. Our form has been very consistent,” he said of the A-League Premiership winners.
I-m not asking the players for anything extra. I-m just asking them to produce the performances they-ve been producing all year.
“It-ll be a tough game, they-re a formidable opponent but we-ve proved all year we can play good quality football.
“All I-m asking is for the players to reproduce that tomorrow.”
Sunday, 4 May 2014 Hyundai A-League 2014 Grand Final Brisbane Roar v Western Sydney Wanderers Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane Kick-off: 4.00pm local (AEST) Gates Open: 2:00pm
TV broadcast: 3.00pm (AEST) Live coverage on FOX Sports 2 HD & 2. Delayed coverage on SBS 2 & SBSHD from 4:30pm (AEST).Live Coverage on Sky Sport 4 (New Zealand).
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