'We need to be more killer': Mombaerts frustrated by Roar draw

Frustrated Melbourne City boss Erick Mombaerts says his side deserved to come away with a win following their come-from-behind draw with Brisbane Roar.

City dominated large swathes of the contest at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday evening but ultimately had to settle for a 2-2 final result after twice letting the Roar take the lead in the first half.

Craig Noone’s 39th minute strike cancelled out Brad Inman’s 34th minute opener for the Roar, however, the in-form Roar attacker doubled his haul in first-half injury time to give the hosts an unlikely half-time lead.

A stunning 48th minute strike from fullback Nathanial Atkinson – his first ever goal in the Hyundai A-League – secured a share of the points for City, however, they were unable to capitalise on their remaining chances as the hot and humid conditions took their toll.

Speaking post-match, Mombaerts explained that, with his side controlling 63% of possession and amassing 22 shots through the match, City should have taken all three points from the contest.

“We had more than 20 shots on goal and lots of possession and I have to congratulate our players, but we need to be more killer,” Mombaerts explained.

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He added: “[I am] frustrated about the result, not about the way we played.”

“The way we played we took control of the game with our high press and with our possession play.

“It was good, we created some chances, but we made also some big mistakes in defensive transition because we played high.”

Atkinson’s crucial second-half strike proved pleasing for Mombaerts and he also sought to defend the 20-year-old after his error led to the Roar’s first-half opener.

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“He had a good reaction, good mettle, and he continued to play and I am happy for him,” Mombaerts said.

He added: “In the previous game he also made one mistake, but he is young and he has to improve his level, but we trust also in him.”

However, in a worrying sign for City’s hopes of reeling in 11 points adrift league-leaders Sydney FC, City will now sweat on a review of a late injury to Scott Galloway.

Mombaerts said he was mystified the challenge from Inman on Galloway, which forced City to hold off a late Roar charge with ten men, went without reprimand.

“The referee has to protect the player because the guy didn’t receive a yellow card but we see he tackled the ball but he takes also the ankle of our player.”

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By contrast, Roar Head Coach Robbie Fowler said he felt his increasingly resurgent side had deserved their share of the spoils against the Hyundai A-League’s second-placed team.

“We probably could’ve won the game in the end. Did we deserve to win it? Probably not,” the Englishman assessed.

The result sees the Roar undefeated against City in their two meetings this season, with Fowler further suggesting the resilience shown augers well for his side's top six aspirations.

“In terms of the way we played, and in terms of possession, that was probably not one of our better games but we have not lost again,” he said.

“There’s plenty of positives out of it. That’s maybe three games undefeated – all right, two draws – Brad Inman’s playing really well and scoring goals.

“Defensively we looked okay at times. A little bit lethargic or laboured, but I can’t fault the boys for the effort they put in,” he concluded.

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Round 15

Brisbane Roar v Wellington Phoenix
Saturday, 18 January 2020
Suncorp Stadium
Kick off: 4pm local, 5pm AEDT

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Match centre

Melbourne City v Newcastle Jets
Saturday, 18 January 2020
Kick off: 7.30pm AEDT

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