The challenge of facing the defending champions is one the Roar need and want according to Head Coach Warren Moon.
The two sides meet for the first time in 2021 on Saturday night at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium in Sydney with both sides finding themselves in the upper echelon of the A-League ladder.
The chance to test themselves against arguably the best team in the country in recent seasons is one Moon says his side can’t wait for.
“We’re expecting a good game against the champions of Australia and we’re excited about the opportunity
“When Queensland comes up against New South Wales, there’s always that extra spice. I think this rivalry goes back to the first season, so it’s a game we’re definitely looking forward to.
“This is a challenge that we need and we want. From my perspective, our team is a growing team in terms of where we want to get to so this is a great test for us.
“We’re not a complete side just yet – not saying that anyone is – but they’re the benchmark in this competition and we want to test ourselves against the best.
The Roar are unbeaten on their travels to date this season with two wins from as many away games so far, not that that will cross the mind of the Head Coach in preparation for Saturday night’s blockbuster.
“We go into every game with a positive mindset to win the game – home or away. It’s irrelevant, no matter where we play, we perform to our capabilities and we’re a chance to win,” he added.
Both sides have named faces that are yet to be seen in the A-League this campaign in their extended 20-player squads. The Roar have named Golgol Mebrahtu for the first time in Brisbane Roar colours, also promoting Joe Champness after the young attacker was unavailable to face the Jets last Sunday.
Sydney FC are set to unleash Brazilian Bobô, one of the league’s most prolific strikers, in his second stint for the club.
While the Brazilian’s record speaks for itself, a Roar defence who has been among the league’s tightest this season will enjoy the test according to key defender Macaulay Gillesphey.
“I’ve looked at his record and he’s got a good one for sure. I’ve heard good things so I’m looking forward to that test too,” Gillesphey said.
“We’ve had some tough games against them, but we’re not afraid of them. It’s always a good challenge and it’ll be another tough test for us, but we’re all positive and looking forward to it.”
A-League 2020/21 Matchweek 9: Sydney FC vs Brisbane Roar
Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sydney
Saturday, 20 February (6:10pm kick-off QLD time, 7:10pm local)
Sydney FC squad: 1.Andrew REDMAYNE (gk), 2.Patrick FLOTTMANN, 3.Ben WARLAND, 4.Alex WILKINSON (c), 5.Alex BAUMJOHANN, 6.Ryan McGOWAN, 8.Paulo RETRE, 9.BOBÔ, 10.Milos NINKOVIC, 11.Kosta BARBAROUSES, 16.Joel KING, 17.Anthony CACERES, 18.Luke IVANOVIC, 20.Tom HEWARD-BELLE (gk), 23.Rhyan GRANT, 25.Callum TALBOT, 26.Luke BRATTAN, 27.Jordan SWIBEL, 28.Calem NIEUWENHOF, 33.Pat WOOD **2-4 to be omitted**
Ins: 2.Patrick FLOTTMANN (promoted), 9.BOBÔ (promoted), 18.Luke IVANOVIC (promoted)
Outs: 19.Chris ZUVELA (knee – indefinite)
Unavailable: 7.Michael ZULLO (calf – 1 weeks), 12.Trent BUHAGIAR (knee – 2 weeks), 21.Harry VAN der SAAG (ankle – 1 week), 30.Adam PAVLESIC (gk) (indefinite – collarbone)
Brisbane Roar FC squad: 1.Macklin FREKE (gk), 3.Corey BROWN, 5.Tom ALDRED (c), 6.Macaulay GILLESPHEY, 9.Masato KUDO, 10.Riku DANZAKI, 11.Joe CHAMPNESS, 15.Jesse DALEY, 16.Joshua BRINDELL-SOUTH, 17.Golgol MEBRAHTU, 19.Jack HINGERT, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 23.Dylan WENZEL-HALLS, 25.Rahmat AKBARI, 26.Jay O’SHEA, 27.Kai TREWIN, 29.Jordan COURTNEY-PERKINS, 33.Keegan JELACIC, 34.Alex PARSONS, 77.Scott MCDONALD **2-4 to be omitted**
Ins: 11.Joe CHAMPNESS (promoted), 17.Golgol MEBRAHTU (promoted)
Referee: Chris Beath
Assistant Referee 1: Ryan Gallagher
Assistant Referee 2: Brad Wright
Fourth Official: Ben Abraham
VAR: Kris Griffiths-Jones
TV Broadcast: Live coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 7:00pm (AEDT), Sky Sport 7 (New Zealand), Kayo Sports (www.kayosports.com.au) and MyFootball Live App, Live Fast and Data Free for Telstra mobile customers