“Go hard or go home” is the message from Head Coach Warren Moon ahead of the Roar’s return to Hyundai A-League finals football on Sunday evening.
The fourth-placed Roar face league newcomers Western United in their maiden knockout clash at Bankwest Stadium on Sunday (6pm kick-off).
Moon, at the helm for the first time in a Hyundai A-League finals fixture, says his side won’t be bringing a conservative mindset to the contest.
“Go hard or go home – we’re not there to be conservative, we’re going to be on the front foot, we want to win the game,” Moon said on Saturday.
“We’re not worried about sitting back or what might happen if we’re not positive – we’re going to be positive & on the front foot.
“We want to be a part of the big show. We know it’s an open race, as much as we respect the quality around us, we know that if we perform well on Sunday then anything can happen.”
The two sides enter the contest with contrasting preparations. The Victorians have played three fixtures since the Roar’s most recent – a 1-1 draw with Sydney FC – including a defeat against Melbourne City just a matter of days ago.
Aware of the extended break his side would have between fixtures allowed Moon & his staff to fine-tune the Roar’s preparations for Sunday night.
“We used the time really well. We’re happy with where we are as a squad & we’re excited for tomorrow night,” Moon added.
Captain Tom Aldred is set to lead the side in his first Hyundai A-League finals fixture, as one of 14 players named in the extended squad who could also get their first taste of finals football in Australia.
The skipper is no stranger to do-or-die clashes, most recently securing promotion from League 2 with Blackpool in the 2017 Playoff Final.
“I’ve played in lots of different types of big games, but these are good pressure games,” Aldred said.
“Yes, you know it’s an elimination game, but we’re fully focused on this next game & we’ve prepared ourselves as we have all season. We just need to take that mentality in to it & we’re confident.”
Hyundai A-League 2019/20: Elimination Final 2 – Brisbane Roar FC (4) vs Western United FC (5)
Bankwest Stadium, Parramatta
Sunday, 23 August (6pm kick-off)
Brisbane Roar squad: 1.Max CROCOMBE (gk), 2.Scott NEVILLE, 3.Corey BROWN, 4.Daniel BOWLES, 5.Tom ALDRED (c), 6.Macaulay GILLESPHEY, 7.Jai INGHAM, 8.Danny KIM, 10.Bradden INMAN, 12.Matthew RIDENTON, 19.Jack HINGERT, 20.Aaron AMADI-HOLLOWAY, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 23.Dylan WENZEL-HALLS, 25.Rahmat AKBARI, 26.Jay O’SHEA, 27.Kai TREWIN, 29.Jordan COURTNEY-PERKINS, 30.Mirza MURATOVIC, 77.Scott MCDONALD **2-4 to be omitted**
Ins: 10.Bradden INMAN (promoted), 25.Rahmat AKBARI (promoted)
Unavailable: 22.Jake McGING (knee)
Western United squad: 1.Filip KURTO (gk), 2.Aaron CALVER, 4.Andrew DURANTE, 5.Dylan PIERIAS, 6.Tomoki IMAI, 9.Apostolos STAMATELOPOULOS, 10.Steven LUSTICA, 11.Connor PAIN, 14.Max BURGESS, 15.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, 17.Joshua CAVALLO, 18.Besart BERISHA, 19.Joshua RISDON, 21.Sebastian PASQUALI, 22.Tomislav USKOK, 23.Alessandro DIAMANTI (c), 25.Luke DUZEL, 26.Patrick ANTELMI, 28.Oskar DILLON, 30.Ryan SCOTT (gk) **2-4 to be omitted**
Ins: 4.Andrew DURANTE (promoted), 10.Steven LUSTICA (promoted), 14.Max BURGESS(promoted), 15.Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS (promoted), 26.Patrick ANTELMI (promoted)
Outs: 7.Valentino YUEL (rested), 24. Thiel IRADUKUNDA (rested), 27.Jerry SKOTADIS (rested)
Unavailable: 3.Brendan HAMILL (knee - season), 13.Ivan VUJICA (groin - season), 20.James DELIANOV (GK) (knee - season)
Referee: Chris Beath
Assistant Referee 1: Scott Edeling
Assistant Referee 2: Matthew McOrist
Fourth Official: Alireza Faghani
VAR: Kris Griffiths-Jones
TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 507 from 5:30pm (AEST), Sky Sport 7 (New Zealand), Kayo Sports (www.kayosports.com.au) and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers. Delayed Coverage on ABC ME (Channel 23) and iview
Radio Broadcast: myfootballnation.com (1116SEN).
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