Hyundai A-League preview: Roar v Sydney FC

​The sensational, all-conquering Sky Blues are chasing history but will have their work cut out against a Brisbane side in form, with Jamie Maclaren back and with a strong home record against Sydney FC.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Brisbane Roar FC v Sydney FC

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Kick-Off: 6:50PM (Local) (7:50PM (AEDT))

Referee: Alan Milliner

Assistant Referee 1: Ryan Gallagher

Assistant Referee 2: Andrew Lindsay

Fourth Official: Kurt Ams

TV Broadcast: Live coverage on Fox Sports 505 from 7.00pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 1 (New Zealand)

Radio Broadcast: 702 ABC Sydney, ABC Local Radio NSW, 612 ABC Brisbane & ABC Local Radio Queensland,  Grandstand Digital, Online and via the app, EON Sports Radio (

Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #BRIvSYD

To purchase tickets visit

Brisbane Roar FC squad: 1.Michael THEO (gk), 3.Luke DEVERE, 4.Daniel BOWLES, 5.Corey BROWN, 7.Thomas KRISTENSEN, 8.Jacob PEPPER, 9.Jamie MACLAREN, 10.Brett HOLMAN, 11.Tommy OAR, 13.Jade NORTH, 15.ARANA, 17.Matt MCKAY (c), 19.Jack HINGERT, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 22.Thomas BROICH, 23.Dimitri PETRATOS, 25.Kye ROWLES, 26.Nick D’AGOSTINO

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 8.Jacob PEPPER (promoted), 9.Jamie MACLAREN (returns from international duty), 25.Kye ROWLES (promoted), 26.Nick D’AGOSTINO (promoted)

Jamie Maclaren

Outs: 28.Brandon BORRELLO (hamstring – 2 weeks), 33.Joey KATEBIAN (not selected)

Unavailable: Nil

Sydney FC squad: 4.Alex WILKINSON, 5.Matt JURMAN, 6.Joshua BRILLANTE, 7.Michael ZULLO, 8.Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, 9.BOBÔ, 10.Milos NINKOVIC, 11.Bernie IBINI, 13.Brandon O’NEILL, 14.Alex BROSQUE (c), 17.David CARNEY, 18.Matt SIMON, 19.George BLACKWOOD, 20.Danny VUKOVIC (gk), 21.Filip HOLOSKO, 22.Sebastian RYALL, 23.Rhyan GRANT, 30.Mitchell EVANS (gk)

**two to be omitted**

Ins: 11.Bernie IBINI (promoted), 19.George BLACKWOOD (promoted)

Bernie Ibini

Outs: Nil

Unavailable: 20.Vedran JANJETOVIC (illness – 1 week)


The Sky Blues have swept all before them so far this season, breaking scoring records, wowing crowds and already opening up a six-point lead at the top of the Hyundai A-League.

It’s been sublime stuff from Arnie’s Army.

And they are chasing more history on Saturday night, with three points meaning they’ll equal Melbourne Victory [2006/07 Season] for the best start to a season of seven straight wins.

Sydney FC players celebrate one of their goals against Perth Glory on Sunday.

But this could be their biggest test yet, especially given the Sky Blues record in Brisbane.

In 17 previous clashes between the two clubs at Suncorp, Sydney has come away with three points on just three occasions. It’s a huge hoodoo to overcome but if any side can do it it’s this confident and hungry Sky Blues team.

A feature of the Roar’s game over the first six weeks is how they have found different ways to win in 2016/17.

While they were the great entertainers under John Aloisi last season, scoring plenty of goals and ripping teams apart with their fast, passing game, they’ve been very different in their victories this campaign.

There’s been a real starch to their defence – lead superbly by Luke DeVere and Jade North – and opposition sides have found it difficult to find space around their box.

Luke DeVere - Roar

In short, they are well organised and have good quality in their squad. 

Can the Sky Blues create more history of will Aloisi come up with a genius game plan to stop them. 

With a packed Suncorp, can’t wait for this one!


Hyundai A-League Round 7 stats


Roar’s attack will be boosted by the return of striker Jamie Maclaren after he started and played almost an hour against Thailand for the Caltex Socceroos on Tuesday night.

They missed his pace and incisive runs off the shoulder of defenders against the Reds last week, underlining how important the 23-year-old is to Brisbane’s hopes.

Brandon Borrello celebrates with Jamie Maclaren after scoring against Perth Glory.

His return will allow Brett Holman to drop a little deeper to find pockets of space between Sydney’s defence and midfield.

Holman got his first goal of the campaign last time out and as he gets fitter, his football and his impact will grow.  He’ll be a key for the home side.

The Sky Blues set a new Hyundai A-League record last weekend, their 17 goals the most scored in the opening six rounds of a season.

The beauty for coach Graham Arnold is that everyone is contributing. Milos Ninkovic (4 goals), Alex Brosque (4), Filip Holosko (3), Bobo (3) and David Carney (2)

Sydney FC players celebrate one of David Carney's two goals in their win over Melbourne Victory.

And you can’t underestimate the impact of Matt Simon off the bench. After defences have had to deal with Bobo for 70 minutes, the last thing they want to deal with is a fresh, fiery and physical Simon in their faces. 

He’s been a real weapon for Sydney, a reason why eight of their 17 goals have come in the last 20 minutes of matches this season.


Milos Ninkovic. The Serbian playmaker tormented Perth last weekend – with two goals and an assist – and is in his best form during his time in the Harbour City. Almost untouchable when at the top of his game, Roar will be up against it if “Ninko” is firing again. And he was in the EA Sports’ FIFA TOTW alongside Neymar and of course in the team of the week, too. 

FORM LINES (last five games)


Sydney FC: WWWWW


Brisbane Roar 2-3 Sydney FC