Western Sydney midfielder Aaron Mooy will use the memory of his crestfallen team-mates last year as added motivation to avoid a second consecutive grand final loss.
Western Sydney midfielder Aaron Mooy will use the memory of his crestfallen team-mates last year as added motivation to avoid a second grand final loss in as many years.
Mooy was part of the side that lost to Central Coast last season and is desperate not to experience that same empty feeling against Brisbane on Sunday.
The talented midfielder has been reminded of that grand final day pain all week in the lead-up to the battle with the Roar and is resolved to ensure there's no similar heartbreak at Suncorp Stadium.
"It still hurts when you think about it and it wasn't a great day for any of us," Mooy told www.footballaustralia.com.au this week.
"It's always in the back of your mind and you don't want to feel like that again. It was tough seeing the boys so upset.
"We were probably a bit overwhelmed with the whole concept of it last year but this year the whole squad has experienced it so hopefully we can put on a performance.
"There's all the build-up but we just have to concentrate on our job and if we do that the result should take care of itself."
Wanderers boss Tony Popovic reflected that sentiment.
"A large number of players were involved in the grand final last year and they know how that felt but we've got a chance to put that right.
"We don't want to taste that sick feeling again after a grand final.
"But it won't be easy. We've got a very good opponent waiting at the other side and we know it will be very tough encounter but we feel that we're a lot better prepared this time round.
"We've got one to go and we want to win. The group just seems in a better place this time, better mentally and the ACL has helped us a lot.
"It's been big game after big game and the players just keep producing."
Mooy says if any team deserves to be favourites for the decider it's the Roar but has vowed his side will give a good account of themselves.
Wanderers have failed to taste victory against the Roar this season, losing 3-1 early in the campaign at Suncorp.
The two sides also played out thrilling 1-1 draws on two separate occasions at Pirtek Stadium, including most recently in round 26 last month.
"They won the league by a fair distance so they will definitely be favourites and probably deserve to be," Mooy said.
"They've definitely improved since last year. They keep the ball really well and are putting their chances away. They're just a quality side all over the park.
"But finals are a different kettle of fish. It really is about who turns up better prepared on the day and with the right mindset.
"We've been together for two years now as a squad and this will be the cherry on the cake if we can win the championship.
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