Travel taking its toll on Roar

Frans Thijssen concedes Brisbane Roar’s hectic recent schedule is taking its toll on his players after they lost a nine-goal thriller to Sydney FC on Sunday.

Despite getting off to the perfect start with Henrique’s fifth-minute opener at Allianz Stadium, Roar was overpowered by the Marc Janko-inspired Sky Blues as they went down 5-4.

Roar is currently juggling their Hyundai A-League season with their commitments in the Asian Champions League and Thijssen believes the build-up of matches played its part in a “crazy game”.

“If you score four goals you expect to go home with points,” he lamented afterwards.

“I was quite happy with the first 35 minutes until they got the penalty and [to go 2-1 up]. Then it was heads down a little bit and you saw players were a bit tired.

“We’ve had some trips over the last weeks a lot of games so it’s no surprise that a few players showed they were really tired and you saw that in the second half too.

“I don’t like excuses but you could see some players we had to think about giving a rest.”

Roar trailed 4-1 with just 10 minutes left before an Andrija Kaluderovic penalty and Steve Lustica strike got them back within one.

Sydney skipper Alex Brosque then extended the home side’s lead before Dimitri Petratos scored in the final minute to make it 5-4 but there would be no equaliser for Brisbane.

The defeat means Roar end the weekend outside the top six, two points behind Melbourne City although they do have a game in hand.

“I still think we can make the finals, we are still in a good position,” Thijssen said.

“We’re still in a position to qualify but we need points.

“We have a lot of home games to go…if you look at our games since I’ve been here I think 70 percent is a way from home.

“But even with them you have to win too….we’re still in a good positon to be sixth with games in hand.”

There will be no rest for Brisbane this week as they host Suwon Bluewings in a vital ACL clash on Wednesday night before league-leaders Wellington Phoenix come to Suncorp on Sunday.

They also have an injury concern over striker Jean Carlos Solorzano, who didn’t return in the second half after picking up a thigh injury.