Roar reign in Gosford
A five-star performance has earned Brisbane Roar a strong win over the Central Coast Mariners in Gosford on Saturday night.
A pulsating contest finished in the Roar's favour with four different goal scorers finding the back of the net for the visitors with some simply exquisite finishing on display.
A proud Darren Davies praised his side's performance in a highly-entertaining and frenetic affair.
"We're good for entertainment & I'm over the moon for the boys. The first three goals were fantastic...and we went on and scored a couple more too," Davies said post-match.
"I thought we were the better side, but it was a shootout."
"It’s so pleasing for the players, they came down here positive and got a very good result. Actions speak louder than words, the boys have bought in together & it was fantastic."
Eric Bautheac opened the scoring with a Goal of the Season contender, acrobatically finishing past Ben Kennedy on the half-hour mark before Alex Lopez put in his own contender with a wickedly struck first-time volley.
Connor Pain sliced the margin in half minutes later, but then it was Tobias Mikkelsen's turn to show off his attacking abilities, perfectly placing a glancing header into the bottom corner.
The scoring wasn't done yet for the first half as Aiden O'Neill again cut the margin to one in first-half stoppage time. O'Neill would be one of two Mariners sent off in the second half for a second bookable offence, alongside Matt Simon who was given his marching orders in second-half stoppage time.
Lopez's second of the night, a well-placed finish into the bottom corner, restored the visitor's two-goal lead before Dylan Wenzel-Halls netted his third goal in four games to seemingly secure the points for the Roar.
Jordan Murray bagged a late consolation goal for the home side, but the Roar had done enough to secure their first away win of Season 2018/19.
A split round in Round 21 means our next clash is a return to Suncorp Stadium to face Western Sydney Wanderers on Friday, 8 March (6:50pm KO). Get your tickets HERE.
STORY OF THE GAME
- The Roar's youngest ever player Izaack Powell was introduced in the 23rd minute for his second Hyundai A-League appearance in place of Dane Ingham. Daniel Leck also played his first minutes of the season, coming off the bench in the second half.
- Four different scorers found the net for the Roar with two stunning strikes in the first half from Eric Bautheac & Alex Lopez.
- The Mariners finished with nine men following red cards to Aiden O'Neill & Matt Simon.
- The win is the Roar's first on the road for the 2018/19 season, and their second in three matches.
Brisbane Roar - Bautheac 32' - 0-1
Dylan Wenzel-Halls picks out Eric Bautheac's diagonal run into the area, which is beautifully controlled off the chest of the Frenchman before he pulls off an acrobatic finish.
Brisbane Roar - Lopez 36' - 0-2
Alex Lopez times a first-time strike to perfection, connecting beautifully with a dipping ball & beating Kennedy for sheer pace from the edge of the area.
Central Coast Mariners - Pain 38' - 1-2
The Mariners break quickly from a free-kick as Connor Pain is found inside the area with a cross from the right wing, finishing well with a header from close range.
Brisbane Roar - Mikkelsen 45' - 1-3
Tobias Mikkelsen is found inside the area, glancing a header across the face of goal which nestles inside the right post.
Central Coast Mariners - O'Neill 45+2' - 2-3
Two Mariners link up with a one-two outside the area which is then finished off with a well-placed first-time strike from Aiden O'Neill.
Brisbane Roar - Lopez 54' - 2-4
Lopez is afforded too much space as he charges towards the area before cutting on to his right & firing into the bottom corner.
Brisbane Roar - Wenzel-Halls 75' - 2-5
Wenzel-Halls is played through behind the Mariners line setting up a one-on-one chance against Kennedy & he comes out on top, finishing through the keeper's legs.
Central Coast Mariners - Murray 83' - 3-5
A half-clearance from the Roar is headed back into the mixer before Jordan Murray's header across goal finds the back of the net off the inside of the post.
Hyundai A-League 2018/19 - Round 20: Central Coast Mariners v Brisbane Roar
Central Coast Stadium, Gosford
Friday, 22 February
Central Coast Mariners 3 (Pain 38', O'Neill 45+2', Murray 83')
Brisbane Roar 5 (Bautheac 32', Lopez 36', 54', Mikkelsen 45', Wenzel-Halls 75')