Roar ready to rumble

Brisbane Roar have sewn up a home grand final in the eyes of many, but a high-intensity training session at Ballymore on Thursday proves there will be no complacency in the second leg of their major semi-final with Central Coast on Saturday.

Brisbane Roar have sewn up a home grand final in the eyes of many, but a high-intensity training session at Ballymore on Thursday proves there will be no complacency in the second leg of their major semi-final with Central Coast on Saturday.

Recording a 2-0 win at Bluetongue Stadium means the Roar will return to Suncorp, where they are undefeated this season, knowing that even a draw or a one-goal loss will be enough to see them progress to the Championship decider.

But while the Mariners are at long odds to trouble the Hyundai A-League Premiers, a heated and highly physical 11-a-side scrimmage at the close of the Roar's Thursday morning hit-out shows they are taking nothing for granted.

Foundation Roar player Massimo Murdocca said that the hard and fast nature of the session was indicative of a desire to stay on the boil and the fierce competition for places.

"That's how it is in finals. We've been here before and we know how important these games are, but we've never been in a major semi-final before," he said.

"It's different for a lot of us, being in this situation, and we don't want to let it slip, so we're going to work extra hard."

"I think (it's good for everyone to be getting stuck into each other at training). I think it keeps everyone on their toes, and at the end of the day everyone wants to play, so it's good for everybody to have that competition."

Murdocca, who returned from a quad injury in the first round against the Mariners, is one of a number of starting-standard Roar players resigned to a place on the bench in the final weeks of the 2010-11 season.

"It'll be tough for me to start in the next couple of weeks. I'll probably have to be a bench player for the rest of the year, which is a bit of a disappointment," he said.

"But that's the way it goes and if that's the sacrifice I have to take for the team to win the championship, I-ll be happy to do it."

"We've really benefitted from the bench this year, and I want these two games to be no different. I want to make an impact."

"Whoever else is alongside me on the bench, when we get our opportunity, we want to make a difference and we want to keep the momentum going for the team, whether it's the first minute or the 90th minute."

Despite earlier reports to the contrary, Costa Rican marksman Jean Carlos Solorzano is set to be recalled to the starting side as the central attacker, pushing Kosta Barbarouses to the right flank and relegating crowd-favourite Henrique to the bench.

"Nico's (Solorzano) been that striker this year, scoring in big moments, and Ricky (Henrique) is coming back from a very severe injury (broken leg), as well. His fitness isn't quite there, so I don't blame Ange (Postecoglou) for making that call," said Murdocca.

"It's a massive game and I think Nico's probably the most suited to it."