Round eight in review

We take a look at Round Eight, which saw Brisbane Roar open up a three point lead at the top of the table.

We take a look at Round Eight, which saw Brisbane Roar open up a three point lead at the top of the table.

Central Coast Mariners 0-0 Melbourne Victory Central Coast Mariners looked off the pace throughout in this match and at full time, new coach Phil Moss would have been relieved to escape with a share of the points. Melbourne Victory was by far the better side, their attacking triumvirate of James Troisi, Archie Thompson and Kosta Barbarouses constantly threatened as Mitch Nicholls pulled the strings behind them.

Nick Ansell replaced the suspended Adrian Leijer at the heart of the Victory defence but tests were scant, as he cruised through an untroubled 90 minutes. Victory created opening after opening but they didn-t trouble Mariners ‘keeper Liam Reddy enough and they will be frustrated that they didn-t take all three points after an utterly dominant performance.

Brisbane Roar 1-0 Perth Glory League leaders Brisbane Roar hosted Perth Glory with the early opportunity to put the pressure on the chasing back by claiming three points. They did exactly that, courtesy of a brilliantly taken goal by their lethal centre forward, Besart Berisha. It was his 38th goal in 60 appearances for Roar and with his contract situation up in the air, his admirers will be watching on with interest.

With Michael Theo injured, young goalkeeper Matt Acton made his debut for Roar, keeping a clean sheet. The state of the pitch at Suncorp Stadium made it difficult to for both sides and it was a touch of class from Berisha that separated the sides. Just before the hour mark, the Albanian shimmied past a Glory defender before arrowing a left footed finish past Danny Vukovic. The win means that Brisbane has a three point buffer at the top of the table.

Sydney FC 2-0 Newcastle Jets Sydney FC claimed a club record fourth straight win, pushing themselves up to third. The Sky Blues recovered from a sluggish start against the Jets to score twice and keep a clean sheet, despite the best efforts of the league-s in-form striker, Adam Taggart, and the recalled Emile Heskey. Sydney FC was unchanged but they lost Alessandro Del Piero to injury in the first half. Shortly afterwards, they opened the scoring when Ali Abbas-s cross from the left was beautifully controlled by Joel Chianese, who made no mistake in finishing past Mark Birighitti. Del Piero-s injury saw Ranko Despotovic enter the action.

Richard Garcia took both the captain-s armband and Del Piero-s number 10 position and excelled in the second half, but it was Despotovic who sealed the deal, scoring his second in as many weeks. The Jets defence opened up in front of the big Serbian and he slalomed his way through, before finishing left footed in front of the Cove to wrap up a well-deserved win.

Wellington Phoenix 0-0 Western Sydney Wanderers Phoenix and Wanderers played out a nil-all draw at Westpac Stadium and in truth, the Premiers rode their luck. Wellington is one of the toughest away trips in the league and Tony Popovic rotated his squad, recalling captain Michael Beauchamp in place of Matthew Spiranovic, as well as giving a surprise start to Dean Heffernan. Youssouf Hersi made his comeback from injury in the second half. Wanderers, obviously aware of the result in Brisbane the night previous, was happy to take the point and in the end they were indebted to a sharp save from Ante Covic at the death, to preserve it.

Melbourne Heart 3-3 Adelaide United This match was, without doubt, the highlight of a strangely goal-starved Round Eight. It was one for the ages as Adelaide raced out of the blocks to lead 2-0 after a quarter of an hour. Heart showed that the spirit remains though and set about dismantling Adelaide one goal at a time. The centrepiece of the action as Andrea Miglorini-s unbelievable brace, which dragged Heart level, before David Williams scored from the spot to put his side ahead. Then, a deflected free kick from Marcelo Carrusca levelled the scores again.

Heart was again without the services of their star man, Harry Kewell, but in Miglorini they have unearthed another creative outlet. Steven Lustica and Sergio Cirio had scored early and in truth, Heart looked gone. Miglorini had other ideas though. His first goal was a contender for a goal of the season, an arcing, dipping strike from 30 yards that arrowed past Eugene Galekovic. His second was, technique-wise, just as good. Aziz Behich-s cut back from the left found the Italian midfielder, who hit a stinging first time volley into the back of the net, prompting a fist-pumping celebration from John Aloisi, celebrated as vigorously as any of his great goals. David Williams put Heart ahead from the spot, but then Carrusca-s free kick deflected in off Massimo Murdocca to deny Heart a first win of the season.