A classic smash and grab performance from Brisbane Roar saw Belinda Wilson’s side defeat Western Sydney Wanderers 3-0 at Marconi Park.The hosts were made to pay for their wastefulness in front of goal with Brisbane grabbing three late goals on the counter attack.
With Brisbane ponderous bringing the ball out from defence, the Wanderers started much the better of the two teams.
Rachel Soutar’s cross was well claimed by Haley Kopmeyer in the Brisbane goal before Keelin Winters blazed a loose ball over the bar from the edge of the box.
Erica Halloway and Rachel Soutar combined well down the right before Kendall Johnson’s dangerous ball was cleared away by the Brisbane defence.
Brisbane’s inclination to play the short pass out of trouble was admirable but it was beginning to allow the Wanderers to dominate proceedings
The Red & Black should have grabbed the lead midway through the first half.
A swashbuckling run from fullback Kendall Johnson released Michelle Carney on the edge of the box, who then found Keelin Winters storming through the Brisbane defence, but the American sent her toe-poke agonizingly wide.
The game began to open up with Erica Halloway in particular a standout on the Wanderers’ right - at one point providing the touch of the match by plucking the ball from the sky with her toe without breaking stride.
However, Brisbane should have gone ahead when Rachel Soutar’s poor clearance fell to Emily Gielnik in the penalty area. Fortunately for Soutar, Teagan Micah was out quickly to smother.
The Wanderers continued to pepper the Brisbane goal with an ambitious chip from Hannah Beard sailing wide before Winters’ left-footed effort was saved well by Haley Kopmeyer.
Kendall Johnson hit the bar with a sumptuous free kick from outside the box before Winters went close again, lifting a delightful ball from Halloway onto the roof of the net.
For all their dominance, Norm Boardman’s side were unable to find the back of the net with the two sides departing all square at the half-time interval.
Alix Roberts replaced Hannah Beard on the left side of the Wanderer’s front three and immediately looked to take on opposite number Alisha Foote.
Brisbane were hanging on – just.
Winters finally had the ball in the net but referee Lara Smith had already blown up for a foul, before she was denied yet again by Kopmeyer.
It would prove to be costly with Brisbane and Emily Gielnik capitalising on a mix up at the back to open the scoring.
To say Gielnik’s effort was against the run of play would be a huge understatement and the Wanderers would go on to suffer another hammer blow just minutes later when Gielnik slotted home from the penalty spot.
Gielnik’s brace had left the Red & Black shell-shocked and they were unable to muster the free-flowing attacking verve that had Brisbane scrambling on the edge of their own penalty box for the greater majority of the encounter.
Linda O’Neill and substitute Eliza Ammendolia both threatened the Brisbane goal late on but Brisbane landed a third sucker punch on the cusp of injury time through Gabrielle Marzano, consigning the Wanderers to an utterly bewildering defeat.
Western Sydney Wanderers 0
Brisbane Roar 3 (Gielnik 64', 76' pen, Marzano 90')