Preview: Brisbane Roar vs Perth Glory

How will Brisbane Roar fare with a new coach in charge? And against the A-League leaders from the West? This should be a fascinating encounter at Suncorp as the home side attempt to get the Frans Thijssen era off to a winning start after a tumultuous week.

MATCH DETAILS
Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane 

Saturday November 29 
Kick-Off:  4pm (Local) (5pm AEDST)
Referee: Strebre Delovski 

Squads 
Brisbane Roar FC: 2.Matthew SMITH (c), 5.Corey BROWN, 7.Mensur KURTISHI, 8.Steven LUSTICA, 10.HENRIQUE, 13.Jade NORTH, 14.Daniel BOWLES, 15.James DONACHIE, 17.Matt McKAY, 18.Luke BRATTAN, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 22.Thomas BROICH, 23.Dimitri PETRATOS, 28.Brandon BORRELLO, 30.Matthew ACTON (gk), 34.Shannon BRADY 

Ins: 5.Corey BROWN (promoted)
Outs: 3.Shane STEFANUTTO (groin – 6 weeks)
Unavailable: 1.Michael THEO (wrist – 4 weeks), 4.Adam SAROTA (knee – 1 week), 6.George LAMBADARIDIS (knee – 2 weeks), 12.Jean Carlos SOLORZANO (shoulder – 1 week) 

 Perth Glory: 1.Danny VUKOVIC (gk), 3.Brandon ONEIL, 5.Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Youssouf HERSI, 9.Andy KEOGH, 10.Nebosja MARINKOVIC, 11.Richard GARCIA, 13.Diogo Alves FERREIRA, 14.Chris HAROLD, 15.Jamie MACLAREN, 16.Sidnei SCIOLA, 17.Mitch NICHOLS, 18.Jack DUNCAN.19.Joshua RISDON, 20.Daniel DE SILVA, 21.Scott JAMIESON, 23.Michael THWAITE (c) 

**two to be omitted** 

Ins: 3.Brandon ONEIL (promoted), 15.Jamie MACLAREN (promoted), 16.Sidnei SCIOLA (return from injury)
Outs: 8 Ruben ZADKOVICH (suspended– 1 week)
Unavailable: Nil 

Broadcast coverage 
TV – Live and exclusive coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 4.30pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 2 (New Zealand)
Radio - 612 ABC Brisbane, Local Radio Queensland, 720 ABC Perth, Local Radio WA, Grandstand Digital, Grandstand Online/ ABC Radio Mobile phone app  

BLUFFER’S GUIDE 
It’s been a dramatic week for the defending champions with coach Mike Mulvey and assistant Ron Smith gone, and little-known Dutchman Frans Thijssen taking the reins for the rest of the season. Change can often spark an immediate response and it will be interesting to see what team the new boss puts out and if there will be a lift in performance.  

It won’t be easy to turn things around against a Glory side flying high at the top of the ladder, enjoying their best ever start to a season. All of Kenny Lowe’s side is fit and in-form and despite a poor recent record at Suncorp, they will fancy their chances here. 

Thijssen’s first team selection sees only the one change with youngster Corey Brown in for the injured Shane Stefanutto and likely to come straight in at left-back, unless the new boss opts to use James Donachie there again. It will also be interesting to see if the Dutchman persists with Dimitri Petratos in midfield or switches him back to his preferred wing position.

Ruben Zadkovic is suspended for the Glory with Brandon O’Neill, Jamie Maclaren and Sidnei Sciola promoted to the squad. The Brazilian hasn’t featured yet this season due to injury and his return will only add more firepower to Lowe’s outfit.

OPTA DATA STATS 
-Brisbane has lost just one of their last five A-League games against Perth (W3 D1), though that defeat did come earlier this term. 

-Both teams have netted in just two of the last seven A-League matches between these sides, though these were the most recent meetings. 

-Brisbane has averaged more time in possession (59%) than any other side this term. 

ROUTE TO GOAL 
Youssef Hersi and Josh Risdon have formed a great partnership down Glory’s right-wing, with both providing assists down that flank in their win over Wellington last weekend. With the experienced Stefanutto out, expect the visitors to go down that channel again and exploit any potential weakness there. Brisbane have managed just three clean-sheets in their last 20 matches and have been their own worst enemy at times, with Jade North’s own goal last weekend the third time they’ve put into their own net this season. 

WHO’S BEEN IN THE SPOTLIGHT THIS WEEK? 
Roar skipper Matt Smith admitted this week that the players had to take their share of the blame for their shocking start to the season – which ultimately led to Mulvey’s axing. Smith is the type of captain that leads by example and you can bet what’s transpired at the club has hit the central defender pretty hard. Smith will want to turn things around immediately so expect a whole-hearted effort from him. It’s then up to his team-mates to follow suit. 

FORM LINES 
Roar’s 1-0 defeat to Melbourne Victory last Friday night made it just one win from their opening six matches. Only the winless Wanderers have fewer points than them at the moment. It’s the side’s worst run of since season 2 of the competition. In contrast, Glory’s 2-1 win over Phoenix last weekend kept them at the summit and was the first time in A-League history the club has won four matches in a row.

DID YOU KNOW? 
Brisbane has won four of their last five home A-League games against Perth, losing the other. 

PREDICTION 
Brisbane Roar FC 2-2 Perth Glory 
In the past a trip to Brisbane has been one to forget for Glory, often leaving empty-handed, including the infamous 2012 grand final. But Lowe has got this side playing with a swagger. Tough to break down, well-organised with a number of threats going forward. It’s all the ingredients to snap any potential hoodoo at Suncorp. With Roar players likely to lift for their new boss, this promises to be a pretty even contest.