All the pats on the back for just making the grand final might just feel like a bit of an insult to Perth Glory’s players.
All the pats on the back for just making the grand final might just feel like a bit of an insult to Perth Glory-s players.
Sure, winning three finals matches straight in difficult circumstances is an achievement, but this group unlike most pundits, believe they have a chance in the grand final and being written of likely does not sit well with them.
Brisbane Roar are a juggernaut, that much is true, they own all sorts of records, Perth typically don-t do well at Suncorp, winning just once at the venue, but they had never won at Bluetongue Stadium until last week either.
And, oh yeah, their captain, the warrior-like Jacob Burns believes that Perth-s job isn-t even close to done, despite being the man who netted the winning penalty in the Grand Final Qualifier victory over the Mariners.
Burns, who made the decision to take the crucial fifth penalty himself took us through that moment, before pointing out his team are far from done with.
“It was just so many emotions I can-t explain to win a game like that it-s nail-biting sort of stuff, there are a lot of players under pressure and it was probably a hard pill to swallow for the Central Coast boys to lose in a shoot-out,” Burns said.
“When you both battle for 120 minutes it was a feeling of joy and relief that it hit the net as well, it was quite incredible.
“Our job is not finished, that was talked about straight after the game, and while you really have to take things in and enjoy the moment, because it-s not every day you make grand finals, we enjoyed the moment but we also are well aware the job isn-t finished.
“It would be easy to be relieved, relaxed and take your foot off the pedal thinking we have made it but with the spirit in the team, just getting there is not enough, to win the whole thing has always been our target and we still haven-t done that.
“Brisbane are a different side, each game through the finals has been different, we know Brisbane are a quality side and we-re going to be at our absolute best and will have to be on to our game plan and our tactics from the first minute to the last, but- we-re not going there thinking they are unbeatable because through the season they have lost a couple of games proving they are not unbeatable.
“We-re going there with the mindset that we want to take the trophy back home.”
Wanting to take the trophy back home is one thing, wanting to prove the doubters so very wrong is another and Burns is adamant that all the times the media and opposing fans wrote the Glory off is the greatest motivation of all.
“We-d really like to spoil the party, every punter has them favourites and the pressure is on them, they have made the finals the last couple of years in a row and and have all the hype, it-s always well documented about the style and manner in which they play and a lot of people expect them to win,” he said.
“A lot of people have underestimated the quality that we have and I-m happy for it to be like that.
“It motivates us more than anything to prove people wrong, when anyone tells you, ‘you won-t make it or you can-t so this- it-s human nature to lift and say ‘well hang on a sec, I-ll have something to say about that-.
“For me that would be the cherry on top of the cake for me. I am very proud of the way we have played this season and very proud of the way we have conducted ourselves throughout the finals, but you-re remembered for winning things and I-ll be reassuring the boys and pushing them to get our colours, names and hands on that trophy.”
Being of that mindset Burns realises that he and his teammates have to change what they have done against the Roar so far this season and he believes it-s a case of sticking to the game plan, absorbing the Roar-s pressure and making sure the Glory take their own chances.
“They-re a very good passing side and have got tremendous movement off the ball and in a lot of ways they try and catch teams out,” Burns said.
“Either teams sit back against them, try and park the bus and absorb all their attacking flair or teams go at them and they try and catch teams on the counter.
“They-re always going to get chances and it-s what they do in their moments and what we do with our chances that is going to decide the game.”