Canberra too strong for Roar

Brisbane Roar fell to their third defeat in their opening four Westfield W-League matches, losing 2-0 to Canberra United at McKellar Park on the weekend.

The Roar started the brightest and might have taken the lead twice in the opening three minutes. Barely moments after the kick-off Tameka Butt found herself through one-on-one with Chantel Jones but the Canberra custodian advanced rapidly to nullify the threat with a blocked save. A minute later Laura Alleway headed over from a corner when she should have least hit the target.

That was as close as either team came in the first half an hour with the contest turning into a rather truncated and drab affair. Canberra struggled to maintain any sort of possession, resorting to counter-attacks and the long ball in an effort to breach the Roar defence whilst the visitors worked their way into a number of presentable areas only for their final ball to be effectively dealt with by the Canberra defence with Ellie Brush, Field and Sally Rojahn dealing with the aerial threat.

A general malaise was settling over the match that needed something to spark it into life and Canberra duly obliged in the 36th minute. With their first corner of the match Lori Lindsey delivered a pin-point cross that Brush headed downwards towards goal into a melee of players. Field reacted fastest to prod the ball over the line from close range for her first ever Canberra goal and give the home team a half-time lead.

The second half began much in the same vein as the majority of the first forty-five minutes with the respective midfield units closing down the space afforded their opposite numbers and leaving the vast array of playmakers on display with little room in which to work their craft.

It took a bizarre goal for Canberra to double their advantage twelve minutes into the second half. A raid down the right flank from Stephanie Ochs ended with a low cross into the six-yard box. Roar defender Brooke Spence looked to have the danger covered as she connected with her clearance but the ball ricocheted off the retreating Elise Kellond-Knight and bounced off Heyman into the net for a fortunate goal.

And it would have been three in the 67th minute if not for a world class save from Nadine Angerer. Ashleigh Sykes skinned her marker and crossed for the lurking Heyman. The centre forward controlled well and lashed her shot at goal from close range only for Angerer to paw the ball to safety past the post for an outstanding reaction stop.

At the other end Larissa Crummer could have reduced the deficit but her lob, after sprinting clear of the Canberra defence, drifted just wide of the target. After that Canberra saw out the remainder of the match with little trouble to climb to second on the ladder ahead of Sunday’s matches. 

Canberra United 2 (Grace FIELD 36’, own goal 57')
Brisbane Roar 0