Western Sydney Wanderers 1 Brisbane Roar 0
Western Sydney Wanderers FC 1
Brisbane Roar 0
A fairytale return for GolGol Mebrahtu helped the Wanderers to a hard-earned victory over an impressive Brisbane Roar in an intense FFA Cup clash at Pepper Stadium.
Brisbane dominated the opening stages on a great surface and should’ve been one up inside 22 minutes. A mistake from new Wanderers gloveman Andrew Redmayne from a low cross spilled the ball to the feet of Roar’s Borrello but he was unable to poke home an opener as Scott Jamieson cleared the danger.
Wanderers’ best attack came on the cusp of half-time with Nichols’ elegant through ball finding Mark Bridge. The ball eventually spilled tol Mebrahtu but his shot flew well over the bar. Half-time and it was 0-0 with a cohesive Roar impressing against a new Wanderers side still finding their feet.
The Red and Black started the second half in determined mood as they put Roar’s back four under intense pressure. It was end-to-end stuff as the game really opened up.
A well-worked Roar free-kick almost opened the scoring just inside the hour while Broich profited from defensive sloppiness but McLaren’s low shot was easily dealt with by Redmayne.
The increasingly dangerous Mebrahtu was put through by Nichols and he smashed a shot that Young brilliantly tipped over the box.
But the striker who was out of the game for over a year wasn’t to be denied.
With 22 minutes to go, great lead up play from Baccus and Castelen put Mebrahtu through and he stroked it home much to the delight of the 6000 plus crowd.
Both sides battled in the final stages of the game after an intense 70 minutes of Cup football. Bridge should’ve made it 2-0 but his header from straight in front skidded wide as the Posnan went around the ground.
Roar sub Yango thought he’d scored with a sublime flick but it was disallowed by the referee.
It wasn’t to be Brisbane’s night as they conceded a penalty by Borrello on McDonald minutes later.
But in a twist, Bridge took the spot kick but Young went the right way to keep Brisbane in the game.
Andreu came off injured in time added on with a knee injury, a sour ending to a happy night for the Red and Black who now enter the round of 16.