Goalkeeper Arnold plays starring role at both ends to seal Brisbane's first win

Mackenzie Arnold may have made a match-winning save to seal Brisbane's 2-1 victory against Canberra but the Roar goalkeeper was far more delighted to claim credit for the decisive goal.

With Brisbane leading the Green Machine 1-0 following Tameka Yallop’s 17th-minute opener, Arnold launched a long kick across the McKellar Park pitch. 

Spotting Hayley Raso's diagonal run, the Gold Coast-born shot-stopper picked out her teammate from around 70 yards away, and the dynamic midfielder added the finishing touch on 41 minutes.

With the score at 2-1, Arnold got back to her day job in the 87th minute to claw away substitute Leena Khamis’ close-range header but the 25-year-old custodian was glowing about her assist.

“Add that to the stats sheet,” Arnold told FOX Sports.

“I think the whole of Canberra knew it was coming - I literally yelled ‘Hayley’!

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Raso and Arnold recorded assists for Roar in the capital

Opta Widget: Assists

“Luckily, how fast does she get on the end of anything?

“I gave it to her and there it is.”

Arnold admits the quick-fire strike was not something drawn up on the training ground with her Westfield Matildas teammate.

“Not at all,” she added.

“It’s just a kick. I couldn’t tell you where it was going. It just ended up in the right spot.”

Following Arnold’s long-distance assist, the first of her career, Roar went into the sheds at half-time in a commanding position at 2-0.

But Elise Thorsnes gave Brisbane a scare when her 66th-minute strike set up a nervy finish in the nation’s capital.

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The visitors showed no signs of simply closing the doors on Heather Garriock’s side, which resulted in the final stages being wide open at both ends.

Arnold’s opposite number, Sham Khamis, made some fine saves to keep Canberra in the game, and the Roar goalkeeper revealed the message from head coach Jake Goodship was to keep attacking.

”It was definitely to keep pursuing it,” Arnold said.

“In the last couple of games, we haven’t really come out as well as we would have liked.

“We had a little bit of a slow start in that first half but ended it pretty strong.

“He wanted us to keep going in that form and carry it on for the full 90 minutes.”

The victory secured the first points for Brisbane since Goodship took the reins in the off-season. 

But three points could easily have been one were it not for Arnold’s last-gasp save to deny a stunned Leena Khamis late on.

“I didn’t even know it was coming,” Arnold told FOX Sports.

“It just came off her head all of a sudden.

“I just gave the last push. Honestly, the ball was there and I just saved it!

“The last two games haven’t really gone our way so to get our first win is really encouraging so hopefully we can keep going.”

WATCH: Arnold's last-gasp reaction save ensured all of the points were heading back to Queensland.

Canberra travel west to face Perth Glory in Round 5 on Friday, 13 December. The match at Dorrien Gardens kicks off at 6.15pm local, 9.15pm AEDT. Get your tickets here.
Find out more at the Match Centre here

Brisbane Roar entertain Adelaide United in Round 5 at Lions FC Stadium. That match on Saturday, 14 December kicks off at 4.30pm local, 5.30pm AEDT. Get your tickets here.
Find out more at the Match Centre here

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