Brisbane Roar's recent undefeated run came to an end when they went down 5-4 in an historic thriller against Sydney FC at a rain-swept Allianz Stadium this afternoon.
After going five Hyundai A-League games without defeat since the AFC Asian Cup break in January, the Roar played an unfortunate part in history at the hands of Sydney's Austrian striker Marc Janko, who netted a hat-trick as he rewrote the league and his club's record books.
Janko's three goals, two from the penalty spot, set an Hyundai A-League record for scoring in seven consecutive matches. His efforts were his 14th, 15th and 16th goals of the season as Janko equaled then surpassed the Sydney FC season scoring record set by Italian Alessandro Del Piero,
The scoreline equaled the highest number of goals in a Hyundai A-League match and was only the second time in 10 years the Roar had conceded five goals.
As the Roar prepare for their AFC Champions League clash with South Korea's Suwon at Robina on Wednesday, the result left Brisbane one poins adrift of sixth-placed Melbourne City in the race for a Hyundai A-League finals berth although the Roar still have two games in hand.
Roar defender Jerome Polenz said Brisbane had been "stretched" by the Sydney FC wingers and had given away some "cheap" goals.
"If you concede five goals you can't expect to win games" Polenz said.
"We have to analyse things and correct it."
Brisbane dominated possession in the early stages of the game as rain began to tumble at Allianz Stadium.
The visitors got off to a dream start in the fifth minute when Costa Rican Jean Carlos Solorzano slipped a short pass through the centre of the Sydney FC defence to set up Brazilian Henrique.
The Slippery Fish, revelling in the wet conditions, made the most of a favourable offside call to slot his right-foot shot away for his eighth goal of the season.
But the Roar were ahead for just two minutes.
Sydney FC went straight on the attack and a speculative back heel from Janko fell for the host's Matt Jurman just inside the box and he curled a shot into the far side of the goal.
After the two goals inside the first seven minutes the game became an entertaining arm wrestle that continued through to the final minute despite the testing wet conditions.
The Roar came close to scoring a second in the 23rd minute when Corey Brown sprinted down the left and put a low cross into the six-yard box which a stretching Solorzano could only spoon over the crossbar.
Solorzano went to the sideline shortly afterward to have his right thigh strapped and was substituted at halftime by Andrija Kaluderovic.
Dimitri Petratos had chances to equalise through an open play shot and a free kick outside the box but put both efforts over the crossbar. Polenz also had a on-target long-range effort saved.
But Sydney FC made a surge forward in the 35th minute and pierced the Brisbane defence to set up Janko. Roar keeper Jamie Young held his ground and deflected the ball away for a corner.
It was an ominous counterattack and two minutes later Sydney pushed forward again down the left-side passage and won a penalty when Roar midfielder Adam Sarota was late in a challenge on Alex Brosque.
Janko comfortable slotted his effort into the left side of the goal, with Young going the opposite way,
The second half started as lively as the first and Young made two good saves before the Roar countered and had a chance to equalise. Henrique passed to Andrija who delicately put Petratos behind the defence but his effort bounced across the Sydney goalmouth.
A minute later Brisbane were 1-3 down when Bernie Ibini was allowed to run in midfield then slipped a pass to Chris Naumoff on the right who squared across the goal for an easy tap in for Janko to notch his 15th for the season.
The Roar made two substitutions within a minute, introducing Brandon Borrello and Steven Lustica for Henrique and Matt McKay.
Andrija put a shot into the side netting and Borrello had half chances on the break but further gloom set in for the Roar as the heavy rain continued.
In the 75th minute referee Kris Griffith-Jones ruled Janko was pushed in the back by Brown and pointed to the spot. Janko stepped up to complete his hat-trick and 16th for the season.
Brisbane got a penalty of their own in the 80th minute after Sydney FC defender Nikola Petkovic was ruled to have pushed Roar's James Donachie.
Andrija took the kick and converted confidently for the Serbian international's second goal for the club since signing in the January transfer window.
Despite still two goals behind, Brisbane refused to give in and clawed another back after Borrello cut a cross back to Lustica who slotted in his shot from just inside the box.
Sydney went further ahead in the 89th minute when Brosque netted from close range, but the Roar were not done.
They pulled another back in the 90th minute when good work again by Borrello on the right saw the ball drop for Petratos who fired a shot in from close range.
But the clock ran out before the Roar could get back on levels terms in a highly entertaining match.
Hyundai A-League Round 21, Sunday, 15 March, 2015
Sydney FC 5 (Jurman 7', Janko pen 28', 52', pen 76', Brosque 89')
Brisbane Roar FC 4 (Henrique 5', Andrija pen 80', Lustica 84', Petratos 90'),
Allianz Stadium, Sydney
Sydney FC: 2.Seb RYALL, 5.Matt JURMAN, 6.Nikola PETKOVIC, 8.Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, 11.Bernie IBINI (17.Terry ANTONIS,64'), 13.Christopher NAUMOFF (34.Robert STAMBOLZIEV. 72'), 14.Alex BROSQUE (c), 16.Alex GERSBACH, 20.Vedran JANJETOVIC (gk) ,21.Mark JANKO (9.Shane SMELTZ 77'), 27.Mickael TAVARES.
Substitutes not used: 1.Ivan NECEVSKI (gk), 23.Rhyan GRANT.
Yellow cards: Alex GERSBACH 10'
Red cards: Nil
Brisbane Roar FC: 2.Jerome POLENZ,4.Adam SAROTA, 5.Corey BROWN, 10.HENRIQUE (28.Brandon BORRELLO 57'), 12.Jean Carlos SOLORZANO (9.ANDRIJA Kaluderovic 46'), 15.James DONACHIE, 17.Matt McKAY c (8.Steven LUSTICA 58'), 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 22.Thomas BROICH, 23.Dimitri PETRATOS, 33.Luke DeVERE.
Substitutes not used: 3.Shane STEFANUTTO, 36.Fraser CHALMERS (gk).
Yellow cards: Jerome POLENZ 30', Adam SAROTA 37'
Red cards: Nil
Referee: Kris Griffiths-Jones; Assistant Referee 1: Allyson Flynn; Assistant Referee 2: Owen Goldrick; Fourth Official: Matthew Cropper