Roar steal late point

Brisbane Roar has scored a late goal to salvage a point against a gallant North Queensland Fury outfit at Dairy Farmers Stadium.

Brisbane Roar has scored a late goal to salvage a point against a gallant North Queensland Fury outfit at Dairy Farmers Stadium.

The home side played two thirds of the match a man down and in the end it took a lucky deflection from Young Socceroos midfielder Mitch Nichols with six minutes left on the clock to claim Brisbane-s first point in a Queensland derby match.

Bouyed by a good result last week against Adelaide, and in front of a vocal home crowd, the Fury had the away side under early pressure.

The early pressure told and Brisbane found themselves a goal behind after only seven minutes.

James Robinson put a hopeful ball into the Roar box which managed to find its way to Robbie Fowler and the former England international calmly turned to slot past Liam Reddy with his right foot.

The Fury looked to double their lead with added pressure and David Williams found time on the ball 25m from goal after 10 minutes and unleashed a thunderous drive at Reddy-s goal, but the Roar gloveman tipped the ball over the goal.

Brisbane continued to struggle to get into the game as the home side knocked the ball around with great precision.

Matt Mundy was required to dig his side out of a defensive hole on 30 minutes as he nipped between a Williams ball bound for Royston Griffiths as the Fury continued to push the Roar back into their defensive half.

The game then turned a minute later when Fury defender Paul Kohler received his second yellow card in two minutes after fouling Robbie Kruse, reducing the home side to 10-men.

Brisbane began to gain the possession ascendency with the extra man, however some disciplined defending from the Fury team meant the Roar needed to remain patient.

David Dodd had the first chance of the game for Roar after 42 minutes when he met a curling Danny Tiatto corner, but his effort went well over Justin Pasfield-s goal.

Despite some late pressure from the Fury the score remained 1-0 to the home side at half time.

Dodd made way for Josh McCloughan at the break, as Frank Farina reshuffled his deck to put Bob Malcolm in the centre of midfield.

Fury opened the second stanza with vigour as both Williams and Fowler tried their luck from distance, but Reddy was comfortable dealing with the threat.

McCloughan posed Brisbane-s first threat of the half as he rose to meet a Charlie Miller cross with his head, but Pasfield was well positioned to catch the ball.

Roar began to boss possession, but plenty of Fury bodies behind the ball proved a tough wall to break.

Captain Craig Moore was next to threaten, again with the head, when he latched on to a Malcolm free-kick but the ball ballooned harmlessly over the goal.

Mitch Nichols was thrown into the fray on 71 minutes as the Roar sought to make the most of the extra man and salvage something from the match.

Miller looked to pounce on a defensive error on 78 minutes after confusion between the Fury defenders but he couldn-t keep his curling shot from the edge of the box down.

Nichols then claimed possibly the luckiest goal of his short career when the ball deflected off the attacking midfielder from a Sergio van Dijk right-footed shot to level the score.

Fury immediately went on the attack and only a fingertip save from Reddy prevented Robbie Middleby from restoring the lead a minute later.

Miller then had one final chance to complete the grand heist, but his free kick from the edge of the box on the stroke of full time went just over the bar.

Roar coach Frank Farina said he was disappointed with the performance of his side, he was delighted to have secured a point on the road.

“We were flat tonight,” Farina said. “But I-ll take that point any day of the week. “We-re a better side than what we showed tonight and we have to play better than that.”

North Queensland Fury 1 (Fowler 7-) Brisbane Roar 1 (Nichols 84-)

At Dairy Farmers Stadium, Townsville

North Queensland Fury: 20. Justin Pasfield (gk), 2. Robbie Middleby, 3. Chris Tadrosse, 6. Ufuk Talay, 9. Robbie Fowler (c)(15. Fred Agius 80-), 11. David Williams (24. Dyron Daal 64-), 16. Paul Kohler, 18. James Robinson, 19. Daniel McBreen (14. Chris Grossman 64-), 22. Karl Dodd, 23. Royston Griffiths.

Substitutes (not used): 1. Paul Henderson (gk).

Goals: Robbie Fowler (7-).

Yellow cards: David Dodd (5-), Charlie Miller (18-), Josh McCloughan (70-), Henrique (82-), Reinaldo (83-).

Red cards: Nil.

Brisbane Roar: 1. Liam Reddy (gk), 3. Luke DeVere, 4. Craig Moore (c), 6. David Dodd (5. Josh McCloughan 46-), 9. Sergio van Dijk, 10. Charlie Miller, 12. Matt Mundy (17. Mitch Nichols 71-), 13. Henrique, 16. Bob Malcolm, 18. Danny Tiatto, 24. Robbie Kruse (11. Reinaldo 61-).

Substitutes (not used): 20. Griffin McMaster (gk).

Goals: Mitch Nichols (84-).

Yellow cards: Paul Kohler (29- and 31-), Ufuk Talay (58-).

Red cards: Paul Kohler (31-).

Referee: Matthew Breeze.

Crowd: 7173