Brattan beyond semi-final scars

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In-form midfielder Luke Brattan says mental scars from last season’s semi-final loss won’t trouble Brisbane Roar as they prepare to meet Western Sydney at Pirtek Stadium on Friday night.

Brisbane came within one match of a third straight Grand Final last year before the Wanderers stopped their run short with a 2-0 victory.

“It was hard to take but that’s football and you move on,” Brattan said.

“We will go down there hungry, determined and trying to play good football. If we get a good performance like we did on the weekend I’m sure the result will take care of itself.”

Brattan’s own form in Roar’s table-topping efforts this campaign has seen him begin to figure in transfer rumours, but the classy midfielder played down the chances of leaving a club he has been with since 2008.

“The first I heard of it was in the paper, me going over to England,” he said.

“I’m from Brisbane, I love the club and I’ve been here a long time now. I want to win another championship and I’m here for another year after this as well so my future is at Brisbane.”

His performances since breaking into the side midway through last term have also meant the 23-year-old is being mooted as a national team prospect, with Ange Postecoglou examining his options ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

“I think that’s a long shot to be honest,” the playmaker said.

“I’ve still got a lot to improve on in my game that I’m working on every day in training. I’m just concentrating on my form at the moment and playing well for Brisbane.

“I’ve been playing 90 minutes regularly and it’s easy when you have got the players around you that I do.”

Adding to that crop is the returned Steven Lustica, who is a strong chance to go straight into the starting side after defecting from Adelaide United.

“He is a tremendous talent. We had a good partnership last year so hopefully that can continue,” Brattan said.

“He looks sharp, he looks hungry so if he does start on the weekend he will be out to prove a point and he’s a good player so I’m sure he will do it.”

Though Matt McKay is highly doutful to return, Ivan Franjic appears a likely inclusion to Mike Mulvey’s squad for a top-of-the-table clash which could see Brisbane move ten points clear at the top.

“He’s hungry. It’s good to have him back in the squad at training,” Brattan said of Franjic.

“He’s a Socceroo so it would be a big bonus for our starting 11 if he comes in, but if he comes off the bench [that’s] even better because he’s an impact player as well.”

Matt Dorman

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