Brisbane Youth share spoils in opener

Brisbane Roar have opened their National Youth League campaign with a six goal thriller against Sydney FC at Perry Park.

Brisbane Roar have opened their National Youth League campaign with a six goal thriller against Sydney FC at Perry Park.

Despite taking an early lead and scoring three impressive goals, Brisbane were unable to hold onto their advantage and fell victim to a late penalty, coolly converted by Sydney striker Kofi Danning to leave the scores locked at 3-3 at the end of 90 minutes.

Brisbane gave themselves the best possible start to the match, hitting the back of the net through James Meyer in the fourth minute.

Finding space just inside the penalty area, Meyer unleashed a right-foot scorcher that found the top corner of the net.

Not wanting to be outdone, Sydney had a quick chance to equaliser, but Danning-s shot flew just over Brisbane ‘keeper Matt Acton-s crossbar.

Brisbane-s Rocky Visconte created space for himself in the middle of the park a short time later but his low driving effort was just marginally wide of the goal.

In the 17th minute, Sydney-s Tom Cirjak reacted quickest to a cross swung in from the right and placed the ball in the back of the net to bring the game to even terms.

Brisbane-s best chance for another goal before the break fell to Josh McVey eight minutes later.

A perfectly weighed pass from Meyer found McVey with just the goalkeeper to beat, but after outrunning the Sydney defender the shot failed to trouble Sky Blues custodian Aaron Liddell.

Brisbane went close again near the halftime whistle, Ken Dougall-s shot from the edge of the box bounced the wrong side of the upright to leave the scores locked at 1-1 going into the break.

The Roar came firing out of the blocks in the second half, with Brisbane coach John Sime bringing on fresh legs with three early changes.

After spotting indecision in the Sydney back four, Roar skipper Chris Bush muscled his way through the defenders, but his final touch saw the ball bounce off the upright.

Brisbane were heaping pressure on the Sydney goal from all directions and took the lead ten minutes after the restart through luckier effort from Meyer with his shot from the edge of the penalty area taking a wicked deflection into the top corner of the net.

Sydney-s Kofi Danning posed a constant threat to Brisbane and when he found rare space in the box seven minutes later was able to fire off a shot, which bobbled badly off the turf to leave Acton stranded and keep Sydney in the game.

Despite conceding another goal, the young Roar players continued with their coach-s midweek promise of attacking football this season.

Substitute Matt Thurtell was impressing on the park and made his claims for a starting spot known, scoring the goal of the game in the 67th minute.

Receiving the ball 25 yards out from goal, Thurtell spotted Sydney goalkeeper off his line and sent a soaring, dipping shot over Liddell to give Brisbane a deserved lead.

In the final moment of normal time, Roar ‘keeper Acton was adjudged to have fouled Cirjak in the area and after consulting with his assistant, referee Matthew Skinner awarded a penalty to visitors.

Danning took on the spot kick responsibility and made no mistakes, bringing the entertaining encounter to a close with the scores locked at 3-3.

Brisbane coach John Sime was pleased with the overall performance of the team in their first outing this season.

“I thought we started off quite well, we got an early goal, then we dropped off,” he said.

“We gave Sydney a lot of room and they deserved to equalise, I thought they were the better side until half time.

“Second half, I thought we played very well. We got the goals and whether that penalty in the 89th minute was a penalty or not, we should have put the game way beyond Sydney before that.

“I thought the boys played well and we want to be known as a team that knows how to pass the ball, and I think we did that tonight.”

Brisbane Roar 3 (James Meyer 4-, 55', Matthew Thurtell 67') Sydney FC 3 (Tomislav Cirjak 17-, Kofi Danning 62' 88' (pen)) Sunday, 19 September 2010 Perry Park, Brisbane Referee: Matthew Skinner

Brisbane Roar line-up: 1. Matthew ACTON (gk), 2. Rocky VISCONTE (9. Matthew THURTELL 45-), 3. Alistair QUINN (14. Ross ARCHIBALD 59-), 4. Matthew BYRNE, 5. Daniel BOWLES, 7. Christopher BUSH, 8. James DONACHIE, 11. Joshua McVEY (10. Jacob McLEAN 45-), 12. Kenneth DOUGALL, 13. Dane MILOVANOVIC, 18. James MEYER

Substitutes Not Used: 20. Nicholas TUBBS (gk)

Yellow Cards: Dane MILOVANOVIC 32-, Matt ACTON 88'

Red Cards: Nil

Sydney FC line-up: 1. Aaron LIDDELL (gk), 3. Mitchell SPEAR, 4. Nathan SHERLOCK (c), 6. Jared LUM (8. Sam CHAPPLE 63-), 7. Brendan GAN, 10. Terry ANTONIS, 11. Kofi DANNING, 12. Giorgio SPERANZA, 15. Tomislav CIRJAK, 17. Luke AUSTIN (5. David VRANKOVIC 45-), 19. David GULLO (9. Justin HAYWARD 59-)

Substitutes Not Used: 20. Danijel NIZIC

Yellow Cards: Nil

Red Cards: Nil