A goal of the season contender from Josh Brillante and an equally majestic finish from Thomas Kristensen has seen Sydney FC and Brisbane Roar share the points following a pulsating 1-1 draw at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday night.
A match promoted as a ‘State of Origin’ clash certainly lived up to its billing, with Brillante producing the biggest hit of the night when he opened the scoring with a long range screamer.
The Roar were almost architects of their own downfall before the break with two terrible back passes in as many minutes requiring fantastic one-on-one saves from keeper Michael Theo.
Instead the Sky Blues were made to pay for their profligacy when the home side equalised just before half-time with a quality strike of their own on one of their few forays forward.
Brisbane showed much more resilience after the break – and they needed it to withstand wave after wave of attack from Graham Arnold’s men.
Milos Ninkovic, Alex Brosque, Brandon O’Neill and Bernie Ibini all had chances to put their side in front as Sydney FC chased a record seventh straight win but they were thwarted by the heroics of Theo.
Confusion reigned thirteen minutes from time when Rhyan Grant was shown what was thought to be his second yellow card but it was revealed the defender had escaped an earlier booking.
The result ends Sydney FC’s perfect start to the season but they retain a six point lead at the summit, meanwhile Roar’s phenomenal home record was preserved, with the point seeing them remain third.
Sydney FC: Josh Brillante, 13’
The Sky Blues’ high press won the ball back in the attacking third which led to Brillante finding himself with time and space 25 yards from goal. The 23-year-old unleashed a thunderous strike that rifled into the top corner to register his first ever goal as a professional footballer.
Brisbane Roar: Thomas Kristensen, 40’
The Danish midfielder was picked out on the edge of the box with a cross from the left, bringing the ball under control before hitting it with the outside of his foot. The shot curled around the outstretched Danny Vukovic and inside the far post for his second goal of the season.
Roar goal scorer Kristensen was replaced at half-time with a hamstring complaint. He was replaced by Jamie Maclaren who started on the bench following his involvement in the Caltex Socceroos’ draw against Thailand mid-week.
17,322 @ Suncorp Stadium
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