Strong performance on Stefanutto's wish list

While many were tucking into the first course of an all-day Christmas banquet on Christmas morning, Brisbane Roar’s players were being put through their paces ahead of the Boxing Day clash at Hindmarsh Stadium with Adelaide United.

While many were tucking into the first course of an all-day Christmas banquet on Christmas morning, Brisbane Roar-s players were being put through their paces ahead of the Boxing Day clash at Hindmarsh Stadium with Adelaide United.

Christmas Day training is nothing new to the squad, having played former local rivals Gold Coast United over the past three Boxing Days.

However, this season will provide a new challenge with a trip to Adelaide to take on a side sitting comfortably in the Hyundai A-League top two.

Vice-captain Shane Stefanutto said the ritual of Secret Santa established by the players in the change-room over the past three years has helped eased the difficulty of leaving the house on a day usually reserved for quality family time.

“It-s quite nice to see everyone, we-re all mates here and we-re like our own little family,” Stefanutto said.

“It-s a nice little tradition we-ve got here, secret Santa gifts and a bit of a laugh and everyone together for a Christmas training session.”

Brisbane will be looking to give new Head Coach Mike Mulvey the perfect Christmas gift with three vital points as he continues to mould the squad and introduce some fresh ideas into the mix.

The club from Queensland-s capital currently sits second from bottom on the ladder, but an encouraging second-half performance against Perth Glory on Friday showed signs a turn around in fortunes may not be far away.

Stefanutto said the key to securing positive results in the rash of upcoming fixtures was to double last week-s good 45 minutes of football.

“We-re looking forward to the match, it-s going to be a great challenge for us,” he said.

“Three points would be lovely, but a good 90 minute performance would be as good as a Christmas present for us.

“We know if we put in a 90 minute effort, I don-t think there-s too many teams who can stick with us.

“Confidence will only come with good performances and good results.

“The quicker that can happen, the better and then we can hopefully get on a roll.”

Brisbane has taken four wins and three draws from away trips to Adelaide from 11 matches and Stefanutto believes his side can head to Hindmarsh Stadium with plenty of confidence in their ability to secure points.

“We go down to Hindmarsh and we-ve played well down there,” he said.

“All of us can have a good feeling down there, it-s a good stadium, good surface and they get a good crowd.

“So it-s these games we look forward to.”