Brisbane Roar started the season almost as poorly as fellow finalists Melbourne Victory. Losing 3-0 to Canberra in their home kick off, this is now their worst season start ever.

From that perilous beginning, culminating with a Grand Final appearance is pretty impressive. Credit to the Roar players and coaching staff. Belief must be very strong amongst them.

Brisbane have been up and down throughout the season which portrays a picture of inconsistency for Roar. But perhaps it also illustrates a sense of how much the W-League has improved.

Brisbane’s record against Melbourne Victory is impeccable and unsurpassed by anyone else after Sydney succumbed last week.  Even if you say that history means little in the context of these types of matches, if it helps you walk out on the pitch with a little more swagger, then take it.

That said, Brisbane were the last team to make it into the finals finishing up in fourth position, something that shows in their results.

They lost in round 5 to giant killers Adelaide United. Followed up with a 1-1 draw against the perennial yardstick, Sydney FC in round 6. Then lost badly to Sydney playing them just a few weeks later in round 9.

Those sorts of results must cloud your judgement and have the coaches and players wondering what they’re doing wrong. Off days happen, luck happens, great days happen. The question is, which one of these will it be for Brisbane on Sunday?


So Kryptonite works on Superman to render him powerless, but it’s fictional right? Brisbane could be considered a team of Super Women given their prolific numbers of capped Matildas, but if there is an achilles heel to this otherwise invulnerable “hero” or “heroine” team, it would be their mystery inconsistency.

To a degree, Melbourne has suffered the same ailment, but they generally appeared to have recovered better. Perhaps it just seemed more pronounced with Brisbane.

Maybe it’s the very fact that Brisbane have so many Matildas that they thought themselves invincible. Now they have to re-adjust to the reality that “Football isn’t played on paper” as Dave Edmondson stated in the Victory press conference just days ago.

Everything else should be in their favour. They’ve overcome an in form Canberra United in challenging wet conditions. It might be good football weather in other countries, but in Australia in summer, it’s uncommon, so kudos to Queensland.

Key Players

Defensive unit

Without Nadine Angerer in goals, Brisbane has a monumental defence. With Nadine Angerer, you probably need to invent a new word!

One person isn’t a team though, so all of Brisbane’s defenders need to build a wall to stop Lisa De Vanna, Caitlin Friend and Jess Fishlock. If any one of them break through, having Angerer ready to pounce will be well worth the ticket entry. Star on star!

Katrina Gorry (Midfielder)

Katrina Gorry has been in superb form.

Her work rate is always exquisite and her ball skills are fascinating to watch. One moment you suspect someone will dispossess her as she’s clearly in an awkward position, and the next she has dummied and tracked away in the blink of an eye.

Gorry is also Brisbane’s highest goalscorer (5), so it’s quite apparent that not only will she wreak havoc in the midfield, it’s possible she will also rocket the ball into the net.

Tameka Butt (Forward)

In the W-League off season, Tameka “Meeks” Butt was honing her skills in Germany’s Frauen Bundesliga playing for FFC Frankfurt.

Now home and closer to some decent surf, Brisbane Roar’s “Meeks” is one of the most recognisable and exciting players around. She’s the quintessential footballer. Lightening fast and exciting to watch regardless of who you’re cheering for.

Plus does she ever love the big game and big stage with Butt scoring in every grand final the Roar have appeared in. Quite a record.

On paper Meeks might be listed as a midfielder, but in the words of a Barbara Streisand and Kim Carnes classic song, “Make No Mistake”, Meeks can do anything. Go on, you can google the song now. I know you want to.

Melbourne Victory v Brisbane Roar

Sunday 23 February 2014

Lakeside Stadium, Melbourne

Kick-off: 3pm

* Catch all the action Live* at 3.00pm nationally on ABC1. Or catch up from Monday on ABC iView with a full replay at 3.30am on Thursday (*live in AEDT states)

International fans listen into Victory W-League Live Radio at from 2.30pm for pre-game

Brisbane Roar squad: 1. Nadine ANGERER (gk), 2. Laura ALLEWAY, 4. Clare POLKINGHORNE (c), 5. Brooke SPENCE, 6. Joanne BURGESS, 7. Kim CARROLL, 8. Elise KELLOND-KNIGHT, 9. Larissa CRUMMER, 10. Katrina GORRY, 11. Vedrana POPOVIC, 13. Tameka BUTT, 14. Natasha WHEELER, 16. Hayley RASO, 17. Emily GIELNIK, 18. Sunny FRANCO, 19. Ayesha NORRIE, 20. Kate STEWART (gk) (one to be omitted) 

Unavailable: Amy Chapman (knee - season)