Two late goals have seen Sydney FC run out 3-1 winners over Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night.
Eric Bautheac found the net for a second week in a row for the home side while goals from Aaron Calver, Adam Le Fondre and Siem De Jong secured the three points for the visitors.
Interim Head Coach Darren Davies praised his side's fight in the second half.
"I thought they were the better team in the first half, but we were still in the game, I don't think Youngy [Jamie Young] had another big save to make," Davies said.
"We spoke about that at half-time, we made positive changes, scored a great goal but the quality that came off the bench for them was very strong & they ran out winners in the end."
The Sky Blues took the lead early when Calver headed home Brandon O’Neill’s free kick at the near post.
Freshly back from international duty with the Olyroos, Nick D’Agostino was introduced to the fray in the 65th minute and made an immediate impact – delivering a cross for Bautheac to finish at the back post just three minutes later.
Le Fondre restored the visitors' lead ten minutes later when he bundled the ball over the line after De Jong’s initial effort came back off the post.
Substitute De Jong rounded out the scoring for the Sky Blues in the 89th minute when he found space inside the area and finished from a tight angle.
Roar Captain Matt McKay says his side will continue to give their all with four matches remaining, three of which to be played on home turf at Suncorp Stadium.
“We’ve got four games to go, we wanted to get a result tonight obviously but it wasn’t to be, but we finish the season with three home games as well so we need to get a bit of pride back into the shirt and hopefully we can build for next season," McKay said.
Brisbane's focus now shifts to next Friday’s trip to face Melbourne City at AAMI Park.
Sydney FC – Calver 1’ – 0-1
O’Neill’s finds an unmarked Calver inside the with his free kick who heads home to put the home side in front within the first minute.
Brisbane Roar – Bautheac 68’ – 1-1
Substitute D’Agostino whips in a dangerous cross to Bautheac, and the Frenchman makes no mistake as he ghosts behind the Sydney defence and taps home from close-range to equalise for the home side.
Sydney FC – Le Fondre 76’ – 1-2
Ghoochannejhad cuts the ball back to De Jong whose shot bounces off the far post, before Le Fondre turns the rebound into the empty net.
Sydney FC – De Jong 89’ – 1-3
De Jong finds himself in space inside the Roar penalty area before finishing past Young from an extremely tight angle.
STORY OF THE GAME
- The visitors gain the upper hand early on as Calver heads home O’Neils free kick inside the first minute.
- After his return from international duty with the Olyroos, Nick D’Agostino made an immediate impact upon his Brisbane Roar return, laying on the assist for Bautheac to score the equaliser just three minutes after being subbed on.
- Despite a strong second half showing from the Roar, a pair of late goals from Le Fondre and de Jong secure the three points for the visitors.
Hyundai A-League 2018/19 – Round 23: Brisbane Roar FC v Sydney FC
Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Friday, 29 March
Brisbane Roar FC 1 (Bautheac 68’)
Sydney FC 3 (Calver 1’, Le Fondre 76’, de Jong 89’)