Hyundai A-League preview: Roar v City

Are Brisbane Roar back? Back-to-back wins means John Aloisi’s side is on the up but this looms as their biggest test against brilliant Bruno and Melbourne City’s sexy football.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Brisbane Roar FC v Melbourne City FC

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Kick-Off: 6:50PM (Local) (7:50PM (AEDT))

Referee: Peter Green

Assistant Referee 1: Nathan MacDonald

Assistant Referee 2: Ashley Beecham

Fourth Official: Alan Milliner

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on Fox Sports 505 from 7.00pm (AEDT), SBS 2 from 7.30pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 4 (New Zealand)

Radio Broadcast: Online & via the ABC Radio Mobile App – A-league Live Following cricket coverage: 612 ABC Brisbane, ABC Local Radio Qld, 774 ABC Melbourne & ABC Local Radio Vic, Grandstand Digital, Crocmedia A-League Live (www.facebook.com/A-leagueLIVERadio), 1116 SEN (Melbourne), EON Sports Radio (eonsportsradio.com)

Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #BRIvMCY

To purchase tickets visit www.aleague.com.au

Dimitri Petratos

Brisbane Roar FC squad: 1.Michael THEO (gk), 3.Luke DEVERE, 4.Daniel BOWLES, 5.Corey BROWN, 7.Thomas KRISTENSEN, 8.Jacob PEPPER, 9.Jamie MACLAREN, 10.Brett HOLMAN, 11.Tommy OAR, 13.Jade NORTH, 15.ARANA, 16.Nathan KONSTANDOPOULOS, 17.Matt MCKAY (c), 19.Jack HINGERT, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 22.Thomas BROICH, 23.Dimitri PETRATOS, 28.Brandon BORRELLO

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 15.ARANA (promoted), 16.Nathan KONSTANDOPOULOS(promoted), 23.Dimitri PETRATOS (promoted)

Outs: 33.Joey KATEBIAN (illness – 1 week)

Unavailable: Nil

Melbourne City FC squad: 1.Thomas SORENSEN (gk), 2.Manny MUSCAT, 3.Josh ROSE, 4.Connor CHAPMAN, 5.Ivan FRANJIC, 6.Osama MALIK, 8.Neil KILKENNY, 10.Anthony CACERES, 11.Bruce KAMAU, 12.Nick FITZGERALD, 17.Tim CAHILL, 18.Paulo RETRE, 20.Dean BOUZANIS (gk), 22.Michael JAKOBSEN, 23.Bruno FORNAROLI (c), 26.Luke BRATTAN, 27.Fernando BRANDAN, 35.Christian CAVALLO

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 5.Ivan FRANJIC (promoted), 17.Tim CAHILL (returns from injury), 22.Michael JAKOBSEN (returns from injury/soreness)

Outs: 21.Ruon TONGYIK (omitted)

Unavailable: 7.Corey GAMEIRO (ACL – season), 28.Steve KUZMANOVSKI (ACL – season)

Tim Cahill celebrates after scoring his stunning goal against Victory.

BLUFFER’S GUIDE

Two in-form sides, stacked with attacking flair and surging with confidence. A Harvey Norman Friday Night Football blockbuster is in store.

After a slow start to the campaign, Roar have found a way to win over the last fortnight, including last Sunday’s 2-1 triumph over a disappointing Perth Glory.

They aren’t anywhere near their best yet but the fact they are still winning games must be pleasing to Aloisi.

A match-up with City – boosted by the return of Michael Jakobsen and Tim Cahill – will be a good gauge of how Roar is travelling.

Sydney FC aside, City have been the next most impressive performers over the opening month of the season.

Their football has been slick and positive. Watching City is excitement-plus right now.

Melbourne City players celebrate scoring in the Round 2 Melbourne Derby.

In Bruno Fornaroli, Fernando Brandan, Cahill and Bruce Kamau they have so many different threats for Roar to contend with.

On the back of their 2-1 win over Adelaide United last Friday – plus a Westfield FFA Cup final to come – City is flying and building some good momentum for the rest of the campaign.

There’s a lot to like about this match-up. 

All is set for a thrilling night between these two Hyundai A-League powerhouses to kick-off Round 5.

OPTA DATA

Hyundai A-League Rd 5 Opta Stats preview

ROUTE TO GOAL

A feature of City’s start to the season has been their intense, high press, often forcing their opponents into errors in dangerous positions.

They’ll go out to do the same to stifle Roar’s supply to their attack, especially through Thomas Kristensen and Brett Holman.

When City get the press right, they are a huge goal threat.

Winning the ball high up the park immediately puts the likes of Fornaroli, Brandan, Cahill and Kamau in good scoring areas and they’ve made the most of it over the first month of the season.

While Fornaroli gets plenty of the headlines, there’s a lot to like about jack-in-the-box Brandan. His energy is infectious and he has an underrated eye for goal.

Brisbane have been warned.

Brandon Borrello celebrates with Jamie Maclaren after scoring against Perth Glory.

Roar’s attack hasn’t got going yet but Maclaren’s goal last weekend is a huge positive.

Once he got going last season he was almost unstoppable and with the god news of a Caltex Socceroos call-up this week, his confidence should be sky-high.

Brandon Borrello provided some great punch off the bench against Glory and could come into calculations for this one.

But Brett Holman could be the key for the home side. He has looked good without being exceptional in the first month. Could he explode under the bright lights of Harvey Norman Friday night football?

WHO’S BEEN IN THE SPOTLIGHT THIS WEEK?

Luke Brattan. Has arguably the form player of the competition over the first month and returns home to face his old club – where he enjoyed so much success - for the very first time.