Mike Mulvey hailed the fighting spirit of his Brisbane Roar side after another come-from-behind win to seal the club's third A-League Championship on Sunday in a torrid battle with Western Sydney Wanderers.
After going behind against Western Sydney Wanderers through a second half Matt Spiranovic header, Roar stormed back to equalise in regulation time before Henrique won it in extra time 2-1.
"This club has in its DNA," said Mulvey as he tried to explain Brisbane's inherent fighting spirit, best shown in Grand Finals as they had to fight back after going behind in previous wins over Central Coast and Perth Glory.
"I was never in doubt," a jubilant Mulvey said.
"They have this spirit within them. Built up through the years they've been together. This is some achievement by this club."
For the most part of the first half the Wanderers famed pressing game pinned back Roar.
But at 0-0 the game was still anyone's, as Mulvey emphasised.
"What I said at half-time was we've built a platform to win this game because we withheld what they'd given us."
Mulvey agreed with his opposite number, Tony Popovic, that the injury to Wanderers' Nikolai Topor-Stanley – resulting in a reshuffle which saw influential midfielder Iacopo La Roca move from central midfield to central defence - was a key game-changer.
"We recognised this as a pivotal moment," Mulvey said. "He [La Rocca] doesn't normally play in that position so there was a bit of a pendulum swing And we took advantage of it."
Meanwhile, star striker Thomas Broich added his tributes to departing striker Besart Berisha describing him as a "warrior".
"He hasn't dropped his intensity one bit since it was announced he'd signed for Melbourne Victory," said the German maestro.
And Mulvey was equally effusive about Broich.
"First and foremost he's an unbelievable man. He's humble and driven, which I can say about a lot of our squad.
"But for him to rediscover his love of football which he's done in this country, but then produce the quality he has, we're very, very fortunate."
Broich won the Joe Marston medal for best on ground in the Grand Final, an accolade he was given with Wanderers' Iacopo La Rocca as they both polled the same number of votes.
"He's right up there with the best – if not the best – import we've ever had," added Mulvey when quizzed on Broich's career in the A-League.
"And the best thing about him is, he wants to get better.
"And today he was the architect who delivered the ball that got us back in the game.
"And that was crucial."comments