‘Players are too scared’: Every word of Ross Aloisi’s explosive post-match press conference

‘Players are too scared… that’s what happens’: Ross Aloisi addresses the media after Brisbane Roar's 5-2 loss to Wellington Phoenix

Brisbane Roar head coach Ross Aloisi has criticised his squad for playing with fear in a scathing press conference following a 5-2 Isuzu UTE A-League loss to Wellington Phoenix.

Brisbane flew out of the blocks at Sky Stadium thanks to Florin Berenguer’s goal just 31 seconds after kick-off; goals to Wellington’s Tim Payne and Oskar Zawada were to follow before Nikola Mileusnic levelled the score at 2-2 in the 53rd minute.

Then came a deluge of goals for the ‘Nix, with Bozhidar Kraev making it 3-2 before two more goals to seal Zawada’s hat-trick and a 5-2 win to the home side.

MATCH CENTRE: Click here for stats highights and more from Wellington’s win over Roar
PHOENIX 5-2 ROAR: Hat-trick hero Zawada fuels Wellington’s best-ever Isuzu UTE A-League start after three rounds

Brisbane were undefeated through their first two games of the season with a draw and a win, continuing a magnificent start to Aloisi’s tenure following on from a run to the Australia Cup final.

But on Saturday came a hiccup, leading to Aloisi calling out his players for not showing the bravery to buy into the game plan he had set for the trip to Wellington.

“If you work on something during the week, our brand of football, and then players are too scared to play it, that’s what happens,” he said.

“We didn’t deserve to win. We deserved a lot less… it just disappoints me that certain players play with fear. I don’t understand – if you play with fear and you lose, or you play with courage and lose, you still lose. Let’s play with courage. That’s the way I want to play.

“The problem is, I’ve got two full-backs out, and I’m playing with makeshift full-backs. That’s an issue.”

Aloisi deployed Louis Zabala and Kai Trewin at right and left-back respectively on Saturday afternoon.

“It’s one game,” he said. “We went through the whole of pre-season and the first two games; it’s one game. I’m disappointed. I’m annoyed, like I said. We play a certain brand of football, and that’s the brand of football I want to play. I don’t mind losing playing that brand of football, but not some of the stuff we played today.

“I mean, three goals we gave away. If not more – I’m trying to think (of more). It’s hard enough when you play against a team with so many good players in their team, and they create goalscoring opportunities and score the goals – and then you go and give them three goals.”


Aloisi was then asked to specify what he meant by the fear he saw in his team at Sky Stadium.

“Courage in possession… when I talk about courage in possession: play forward. I can’t count, because there’s that many, but if I go back and look at it, that many backward passes for what reason? We don’t play that way. So I’m disappointed. I’m disappointed in the brand of football we played today,” he said.

“Like I said: I don’t mind losing – but play our football. That’s (why) I talk about courage.

“Press at the right time. Don’t close when you’re not supposed to close. What we work on, we look to get better each game. For me, we didn’t look to get better.

“I’m disappointed. I’m disappointed with the way we played, in and out of possession. No excuses.”