Moon: Roar ready to convert games in hand into points on the board
Brisbane Roar head coach Warren Moon says there's no use discussing the games in hand his side possess over the rest of the top-six challengers unless the Queenslanders manage to convert those games into points in the coming weeks.
The Roar fought hard but ultimately fell to a rampant Melbourne City side in Matchweek 20, losing 3-2 against the league-leaders on Sunday afternoon. Moon now has just three days to prepare his team for another test of its Finals Series credentials, welcoming Central Coast Mariners to Moreton Daily Stadium on Wednesday night.
Brisbane are currently in seventh spot on the A-League table, but can jump into second with a win over the fourth-placed Mariners. Moon's team have played the equal-least amount of games (19) of any A-League side to date this season, along with Perth Glory in 10th.
Moon says the games in hand are worth nothing if they're not capitalised on in a congested run-in to the completion of the 2020/21 regular season.
"Points on the board are still more important in my opinion than games in hand," Moon said.
"It’s great to have the games, but you’ve got to go win them.
"Yes we have the games, but more importantly I’ve been pleased with the performances over the last six or seven games.
"Tonight obviously was a tough test for us, but on the whole we’re just looking at performing now looking forward to Central Coast on Wednesday, trying to get three points.
"Our goal is to play finals, but games in hand are only good if you can use them by getting points.
"There’s no way to get around the fixture list, it is what it is, we won’t make any excuses for it.
"We now put every available body and fit person out on the field Wednesday to try and win the game (against the Mariners).
"That (was) our intention tonight (against City), we didn’t want to sacrifice tonight, we wanted to come here to try and win the game, and we’ll do the same on Wednesday night."
Brisbane's challenges don't get any easier after facing the Mariners at Moreton Daily Stadium on May 12. Moon will then take his side on the road to face third-placed Adelaide United at Coopers Stadium four days later on Sunday, May 16, and Newcastle Jets at McDonald Jones Stadium in Matchweek 22.
A second clash with City in the space of 16 days will then present to the Roar when the table-toppers travel to face Brisbane in Queensland. The four-game stretch - featuring three games against teams currently in the top six - could be pivotal to Brisbane's chances of reaching the 2020/21 Finals Series.
Moon says his team can take great encouragement from a positive showing against City on Sunday afternoon when looking ahead to a busy schedule of games against the sides they hope to be overcoming when the Finals Series arrives.
"We’ll take the positives out of the game," Moon said.
"We showed great character to get back into the match. They are a good side, we know that, they’re obviously top of the table and for good reason.
"But we at times today showed we’re a good side as well. We didn’t do it consistently over the 90 minutes, we’re disappointed like I said with the way we conceded the third goal but one thing I’ve always said about this group is we’re in games, and we’re competitive, and again tonight we showed that.
"We’re disappointed that we lost. We came here to try and get a result, and what I felt we did do was that we found a way back into the game to do that.
"Disappointed with the third goal like I said, but we’ll have a look at the third goal and learn a lot about the opposition.
We want to play finals this year - that’s a key goal for us.
We know if we come up against good sides again, there might be little things we can learn from tonight moving forward.
"But right now, we’ve got to dust ourselves off and prepare for Central Coast."
Brisbane Roar v Central Coast Mariners
Wednesday, May 12 2021
Moreton Daily Stadium
Kick-off: 7.05pm AEST
Melbourne City v Adelaide United
Thursday, May 13 2021
Kick-off: 7.05pm AEST
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