Bleiberg praises gutsy Roar

Miron Bleiberg has praised Brisbane Roar's spirit after his opponent's pushed his Gold Coast side in the south-east Queensland derby at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday.

Miron Bleiberg has praised Brisbane Roar's spirit after his opponent's pushed his Gold Coast side in the south-east Queensland derby at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday.

Brisbane was without quality players Craig Moore (Socceroos duty), Danny Tiatto, Charlie Miller (suspended), and Henrique, Michael Zullo and Massimo Murdocca (injured) as well as coach Frank Farina who had been given a club suspension, but still pushed Gold Coast all the way, with Joel Porter's 31st-minute goal separating the two.

Bleiberg took the unusual step of praising his opponents for showing such strength in a difficult situation.

"Under the circumstances it was a brave performance from the Roar today. With all the hoo-hah surrounding them it was a big effort," Bleiberg said.

"They were also so undermanned and still performed well. With so many quality players to come back they've got a lot to look forward to this season."

On the victory, Bleiberg labelled it a turning point for the one-time title favourites after a five-match winless run.

"It was an important result for us," he said. "It ended our slump and now we're back in second spot. We're heading back in the right direction. Look out Perth next weekend."

The win also maintains United's early bragging rights over the Roar, having won the clubs' maiden derby 3-1 in the opening round.

Porter orchestrated two goals that night, and on Sunday he played match winner again.

He scored the game's only goal in the 31st minute, which came courtesy of a misdirected clearing header from Roar defender Bob Malcolm that fell fortuitously for an unmarked Porter at back post.

Despite undermanned, the home side battled gamely and had several chances to take something from the contest.

Sergio Van Dijk had the best of them. The Dutch striker looked to have leveled just before the break but his tap in was disallowed after teammate Mitch Nichols was ruled to have fouled the rival keeper in the contested play which led to the ball dropping for Van Dijk. Nichols was called for raising his arm when contesting the high ball.