Hyundai A-League preview: Roar v Reds

After last week's heated clash in Melbourne, Brisbane Roar return home to face the much-improved Adelaide United, who’ll have a familiar – and much loved – face in their ranks on Sunday.

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MATCH DETAILS

Sunday, 11 December 2016

Brisbane Roar FC v Adelaide United

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Kick-Off:  4:00PM (Local) (5:00PM (AEDT))

Referee:  Peter Green

Assistant Referee 1:  David Walsh

Assistant Referee 2:  Andrew Lindsay

Fourth Official:  Alan Milliner

TV Broadcast:  Live coverage on Fox Sports 505 from x.00pm (AEDT) and Delayed coverage on Sky Sport 2 (New Zealand)

Radio Broadcast:  612 ABC Brisbane, 891 ABC Adelaide, ABC Local Radio Qld/SA, Grandstand Digital, Online & via the ABC Radio Mobile App – A-league Live, EON Sports Radio (eonsportsradio.com)

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

To purchase tickets visit  www.aleague.com.au

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, 11.Tommy OAR, 13.Jade NORTH, 15.ARANA, 17.Matt MCKAY (c), 19.Jack HINGERT, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 22.Thomas BROICH, 23.Dimitri PETRATOS, 24.Connor O’TOOLE, 28.Brandon BORRELLO,33.Joey KATEBIAN

**two to be omitted**

Ins:  24.Connor O’TOOLE (promoted), 33.Joey KATEBIAN (promoted)

#WSWvBRI - Brisbane Roar remains the only team in the Hyundai A-League this season yet to concede or win a penalty.

Outs:  Nil

Unavailable:  10.Brett HOLMAN (knee – 5 weeks)

Adelaide United squad:  1.Eugene GALEKOVIC (gk) (c), 2.Michael MARRONE, 3.Iacopo LA ROCCA, 4.Dylan McGOWAN, 5.Taylor REGAN, 7.HENRIQUE, 9.Sergi GUARDIOLA, 10.Marcelo CARRUSCA, 11.Sergio CIRIO, 13.Marc MARINO, 14.George MELLS, 16.Jesse MAKAROUNAS, 17.Nikola MILEUSNIC, 19.Ben GARUCCIO, 20.John HALL (gk), 21.Tarek ELRICH, 22.Ryan KITTO, 25.James HOLLAND 
**two to be omitted**
 
Ins:  2.Michael MARRONE (returns from injury), 11.Sergio CIRIO (returns from injury), 14.George MELLS (promoted) 

Michael Marrone on the ball during Adelaide's Round 11 clash with Newcastle Jets.

Outs:  8.ISAÍAS (suspended – 1 match)

Unavailable:  18.Riley McGree (ankle – TBA), 23.Jordan ELSEY (knee – season), 24.Jordan O'DOHERTY (ankle – 2 weeks) 

BLUFFER’S GUIDE

The unforgettable sight of Henrique showing his love for Roar fans after stroking home the shootout winner in 2011’s heart-stopping Hyundai A-League Grand Final at Suncorp remains one of the enduring images of the Brazilian’s eight years in Brisbane. 

But after contract negotiations stalled in June this year, the club favourite departed to join the Aussie exodus at Negeri Sembilan in Malaysia's Premier League. His Asian sojourn ended not long after it began, and now, the “Slippery Fish” returns to the Queensland capital as a Red.

Adelaide United striker Henrique celebrates one of his two goals against the Phoenix on Sunday.

And now he’s aiming to break those same hearts that adored him for his 136 matches in an orange shirt - many as a super-sub.

You sense the pint-sized striker will enjoy a warm reception from Brisbane's fans and they’ll know he’s in red-hot form having returned from injury in spectacular fashion last week.

In fact, United are in increasingly menacing form as they replicate their Round 9 and beyond revival of last season. 

In the last few weeks, the Reds have taken their first three points of the season, battled to a draw with “Invincible” Sydney FC - in the Harbour City no less - and got off the bottom of the ladder (they sit eighth going into Round 10, four spots and eight points behind Roar).

Fine margins in the A-League are such that Adelaide could be in the six by Christmas. And with the influential Sergio Cirio and Michael Marrone back from injury and named in Sunday’s squad, the Reds are starting to look like their old self. 

What’s more, with an impressive record in Brisbane – they’ve only lost four times in 17 visits – and the Henrique factor, United will be quietly confident against a side that’s drawn its last four games 1-1.

Strikers: Tommy Oar (Roar) - Dribbled with purpose and rattled off several scorching efforts in Roar’s 1-1 draw with Adelaide.

It’s the reigning A-League champions hosted by the three-time Championship winners Brisbane. 

There’s a lot to like about this clash in the Queensland capital, and with a kids go free promotion (http://www.brisbaneroar.com.au/article/kids-go-free-this-sunday-at-suncorp-stadium/1rgqy7u5ueufe1dw3c073495ez) plus a Westfield W-League clash on the same bill, Suncorp is the place to be for Brisbane sports fans on Sunday.

Opta stats

Hyundai A-League Round 10 stats preview

ROUTE TO GOAL

For the home side, Thomas Broich’s eye-catching display against City last week showed the great man still has it, and that’s good news for striker Jamie Maclaren.

On four goals, the new Caltex Socceroo leads the Roar’s scoring charts (4) but minus central attacking midfielder Brett Holman – frustratingly for Roar out till January with injury – and his deft supply into the channels, the prolific Maclaren will rely even more on the canny German to get into those pockets and slide passes through.

Jamie Maclaren netted seven goals in four meetings with the Wanderers last season.

Broich and Co. may also look to wind-up from distance - Adelaide have conceded more goals from outside the box (4) than any other side so far this season.

Will Henrique start up front for the Reds? Depending on how he recovered from last week’s match – his first since an untimely injury early in the season – he may just start. Though as a super-sub, he’s one of the sharpest threats in the league. 

United will also look to central striker Sergi Guardiola who, along with Henrique on three goals, leads Adelaide's scoring charts. The Spaniard will have Luke DeVere for company in what should be an epic contest. 

But for attacking intent, Reds full backs Elrich and Garuccio versus Hingert and Brown will be fascinating and key to goals for either side as they aim to dominate the flanks by nullifying their attack-minded opposite numbers. 

Look for Reds orchestrator Marcelo Carrusca to exploit the spaces in behind when the two Roar full backs go. Likewise, Kristensen in the centre of Roar’s midfield.

Marcelo Carrusca and Roly Bonevacia compete for the ball during last season's Round 22 clash at Westpac Stadium.

And for the visitors, they need to switch on before half-time. Almost half of Roar’s goals have been scored in the 15 minutes before the break. What's more, they haven’t lost this season when they’ve taken the lead. 

Adelaide have scored only one second half goal in their last four games away from home and haven’t won a road game since the final round of the 2015/16 Season. But with six draws between the two sides in the last five rounds - including a recent 1-1 at Coopers -  this could be another day of shared points. 

WHO’S BEEN IN THE NEWS THIS WEEK?

Matt McKay. The Roar great extended his contract that will take him into an 11th season with the club.

Contract extension: Brisbane Roar re-sign captain

Matt McKay has re-signed with Brisbane Roar.

And, of course Henrique, who revved up for his Roar return with a sparkling brace in the Reds’ first win of the season on Sunday - his first since a hat-trick two years ago.

VIDEO: Henrique's fabulous double

Form lines (last five games)

Brisbane Roar WDDDD 

Adelaide United LDLDW

Prediction

Brisbane Roar 1–1 Adelaide United