Brisbane ride out storm in composed performance
When one looks at Brisbane Roar’s win over Melbourne Victory they could easily label the 4-3 result as pure mayhem.
And they wouldn’t necessarily be wrong but there is another theme that stands out from Sunday’s rain-soaked encounter at Lions Stadium.
Cool under pressure.
Make no mistake, Brisbane were under boatloads of it heading into the final match of Westfield W-League Round 7.
Last season’s Premiers sat in lowly eighth, above only the winless Western Sydney Wanderers, their position on the ladder betraying what is a talented outfit.
Welcoming the unbeaten and league-leading Victory was no easy task and the home side knew they had to make every challenge, chance and decision count.
Each side made 24 clearances in what was an end-to-end affair, Victory attempted one more shot 14-13 and their 17 crosses to Brisbane’s 13 told the tale of an attack-minded game.
But it was in the execution of moments such as these that ultimately won Roar the day.
Roar finished the match with an 89% success-rate when it came to tackles, crucial as Victory piled forward late on, and were much more efficient with their crossing, racking up 31% accuracy compared to Victory’s 6%.
Stats don’t always reflect the whole game but the above numbers show the difference little moments can make.
The home side looked comfortable for much of the match but the game could easily have ended with the points shared, an outcome that would have left Roar further behind the pack.
But in holding on they move up to third, such is the nature of this year’s Westfield W-League, and Mel Andreatta’s side will be hopping this result is the kick-start for a campaign that looked so promising in pre-season.
Victory meanwhile shouldn’t be discouraged after their unbeaten start to the season was ended as a thunderstorm raged around them.
An error from goalkeeper Casey Dumont and a Natasha Dowie own-goal ultimately killed off their chances but they will be all the better for the experience against a side they could well meet in the post-season.