Brisbane Find Their Roar At Last

Brisbane Roar 6–0 Melbourne Victory

By Kris Goman

This game, played at the Gold Coast Sports Centre, rather than within Brisbane, looked to provide a fascinating match-up. The Roar have had four draws in a row which is previously unheard of. On paper I personally thought they’d be the team to beat not the team to draw with. Victory thrashed last year’s champions, Melbourne City, two weeks ago in a record breaking match but then were beaten, but only just, last week by the same team in the reverse derby.

Thankfully Victory haven’t brought the men’s active support with them tonight after the disgraceful incident last week with some individuals throwing bottles onto the pitch.  The Roar Corps, the Brisbane Roar women’s active support have set up in the corner and look the part.

Katrina Gorry isn’t playing tonight and the Roar midfield may suffer as a result but we’ll see. It’s only Gorry and Emily Gielnik that have scored for the Roar to date so her talents and long range bombs will be missed. But Tameka Yallop is back in and brings her own talents. Lisa De Vanna is still out for Victory so it seems even.

Above: Brisbane Roar’s Jamilla Rankin causing problems down the flank. Photo: @brisbaneroar

Victory kick off. Roar get a couple of corners after Mariel Hecher takes a run down the right but both come to naught.

Kyra Cooney-Cross tries a very long range shot from the right but it’s not on target and doesn’t have enough on it to worry Worth.
A slightly slow play back to Georgina Worth sees Polly Doran rush the keeper but Worth clears it just in time.

Victory pressed again and Cooney-Cross takes another long shot and it’s deflected out by Worth for a corner. The corner goes straight out in a wasted opportunity for Victory. Amy Jackson comes through on the burst and takes a shot but it’s deflected out again safely.

On a transition, Victory keeper Gabriella Ganton and Gielnik are both rushing for the ball. Ganton just wins and clears.

At 26 minutes, Roar make Victory pay for an inability to take chances when Matildas star Gielnik crosses the ball to Hecher who taps it in for her first W League goal. Roar take the lead 1-0.

Above: Mariel Hecher celebrates her goal for Brisbane. Photo: @brisbaneroar

Victory have a pretty sharp passing game when they have possession but they aren’t always keeping possession.

Brisbane came again and Gielnik flicks a ball forward in the box to Yallop and it’s looking dangerous but Ganton throws herself on it to avoid another goal.

Claudia Bunge gets a cross in from the right and Cooney-Cross can’t control her first touch so doesn’t get the opportunity to shoot. Catherine Zimmerman takes another crack but it’s foiled too. It was a good push by Victory who certainly aren’t giving up.

Sharn Freier dribbles down the left then passes to Gielnik who smashes it straight into the stomach of one of the Victory defence then pushes her over. There’s no penalty or whistle and the game moves on. Sometime after, Olivia Chance then gets another shot directly in front and gets some pace on it but Ganton tips it over spectacularly for a corner.

The corner comes to the near post and is cleared by Victory to Yallop who twists and turns and gets a shot away which connects with the left post and bounces in to double Brisbane’s lead. The Roar are finally looking like the team we all think they should be and Yallop gets her first goal of the season.

Above: A banner supporting Brisbane Roar’s Kiwi star Olivia Chance on Friday night. Photo: @brisbaneroar.

Victory continue to attack and a cross comes to Melinda Ayres who tries a bicycle kick but she doesn’t quite get the direction or power right and it’s safe with the keeper. Still looked pretty impressive though.

Back up the other end and Chance sends through a perfect pass to Gielnik on the right on the box. She sends the ball across the face of the goal but no one is there to redirect it.

Clare Polkinghorne comes up from the back to midfield and drives the ball up the middle into the box for Gielnik but she can’t beat Ganton to the ball this time.
Just before half time, Yallop goes down and requires treatment and two minutes of extra time is added. The ball is given back to Victory but nothing much comes of it and the half time whistle blows.

It’s now the second half and Yallop is back on and seems to be OK. There’s a number of possession changes and Polkinghorne is back up the field again and once more feeds Gielnik but she’s offside this time.

Shortly afterwards, we find Cooney-Cross with the ball in the box dancing around Winonah Heatley before she crosses it. Amy Jackson can’t quite reach it but it continues on to Melina Ayres who smashes it into the crossbar and it flicks over and out.

Brisbane make the same play twice with Hecher bringing the ball down the centre or right, passing to Yallop then crossing to Gielnik. The second time Gielnik is by the near post but can’t get it in and misses goal. It’s a successful tactic but just isn’t finishing as hoped.

Brisbane push on again and a very long and perfectly weighted ball arrives to Gielnik in the box but she wasn’t quite expecting it and Ganton grabs it before she can get there.

A little later, Brisbane get a corner and Mariel Hecher takes it. She lobs it to Gielnik who has to almost dive to head it behind her and it bounces onto the crossbar and out. She can’t take a trick tonight.

Above: There was plenty to get the Brisbane fans roaring on the Gold Coast. Photo: @brisbaneroar

Kyra Cooney-Cross gets another run up the centre towards the box and sends it right to Privatelli who crosses. It is right across the face of goal but no one is there in time and it’s a goal kick for Brisbane.

Victory are pressing quite high and get possession back. Beard brings it forward, lays it off then gets it back on a run into the box. She gets a solid on-target shot away but it’s straight into the arms of Georgina Worth. Probably Victory’s best attempt to date.

A ball down the right sees a Hecher cross. It misses a couple of players but Sharn Freier brings it under control, dribbles around the defence to get a clear shot and fires a bullet to the far post from the left. It goes straight past Ganton into the back of the net. 3-0 and Brisbane consolidates their position.  It’s a long way back for Victory now, who were looking pretty gung ho immediately prior to that goal.

A Brisbane free kick by Isobel Dalton on the left is played to an unmarked Olivia Chance in the middle. She lobs it over the wall to Yallop who gets her foot to it but it just goes over the crossbar in a heart stopping moment for Victory.

At 74 minutes there’s another free kick from almost exactly the same spot as the last one and Dalton is taking it again. This time it’s straight into the box and onto Gielnik’s head. She’s to the far left of goal and somehow flicks it up so that it lands on the top right of goal evading Ganton’s outstretched glove and hits the back of the net. 4-0 and Gielnik gets a well-deserved goal after many close attempts. Brisbane have an unassailable lead.

Above: Two more goals for Emily Gielnik against Melbourne Victory. Photo: @brisbaneroar

At 79 minutes Yallop brings the ball down the middle into the box and evades two defenders, shoots but hits the crossbar. It rebounds to the left of Hecher who takes a high left footed kick and it just dribbles past Ganton, who hasn’t recovered from Yallop’s shot yet, and into goal but the flag goes up for offside against Hecher.

Chance also gets a shot on goal from the left which clears the crossbar but forces a big air jump by Ganton.

In the dying minutes of the game, Victory are pressing again to no avail when Anna Margraf takes the ball down the right for Brisbane. She sends a long switch to Gielnik, right in front of goal. She just gets past Ganton who’s on the ground but she skies it into the large fence behind goals.

In the last minute of normal time, Victory are once again pressing. In a repeat of what just happened, Margraf sends another long ball to the centre which is picked up by Gielnik just past half way. She beats her marker and is in the clear with just Ganton between her and the goal. She has an unchallenged run into the box. Ganton comes out but Gielnik takes her time and tucks it past on the left for the long awaited fifth goal. It’s now 5-0 after 90:22 minutes.


With stoppage time ticking on, Victory’s Mindy Barbieri manages to get a yellow for taking out Torpey in what must be her first touch of the match and a free kick is awarded to Brisbane. Dalton goes for goal. It hits Ganton’s glove then onto the crossbar and bounces onto Heatley’s shoulder, who has rushed in front of goal, and she nudges it in for the sixth. Now Victory really know how Melbourne City felt on the end of a 6-0 thrashing.

Above: (from left to right) Kim Carroll, Georgina Worth and Clare Polkinghorne celebrate with Winonah Heatley after she completed the rout. Photo: @brisbaneroar.

Brisbane have finally answered all the questions that have been asked about their performance. It was a dominating win showing no mercy. Ganton made some good saves but if Roar were a little more clinical it could have easily been 10-0. I doubt too many Roar fans are complaining though.


The Roar have obviously been working on their attack as their defence hasn’t really had any problem to date. The linking through the midfield was on point tonight. Gielnik’s positioning was causing all sorts of problems for the Victory defence and Yallop and Hecher kept them on their toes too. They all look sharp and are working as a team which is what was lacking a bit before. On this performance, they really do look the team to beat but have they left their run too late, five games into the season? I guess anything can happen as has been shown numerous times already this season.

Teams: BRISBANE ROAR: Worth, Heatley, Rankin, Polkinghorne, Carroll, Dalton, Hecher, Chance, Freier, Gielnik, Yallop. Substitutes: Aquino (GK), Torpey, Horsey, Margraf, McKenna.

Scorers: Hecher 26. Yallop 39. Freier 64. Gielnik 76, 90+1. Heatley 90+5.

MELBOURNE VICTORY: Garton, Privitelli, Beard, Bunge, Morrison, Cooney-Cross, Doran, Jackson, Barbieri, Zimmerman, Ayres. Substitutes: Maizels (GK), Markovski, Martineau, Zois.

Referee: Lara Lee.

Attendance: 1,455.

Impetus’ coverage of Australian Women’s Football is supported by The Chicken Salt Co. They are offering every Impetus reader 5% off all orders of Chicken Salt from their website. Go to https://www.chickensalt.co.uk/?mate=impetus and place your order – 5% will automatically be taken off of the cost. The coupon code is impetus.

Artwork: Graphics by PW

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