McKay delighted with Roar return

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Inspirational midfielder Matt McKay is pleased to be back in orange ahead of Brisbane Roar’s A-League decider against Western Sydney Wanderers on Sunday.

The former club captain was overseas during Brisbane’s second championship but hopes to add another winner’s medal to his collection following the stunning 2010/11 triumph.

“I’m delighted to come back to this club after the success we had when I left. So to replicate that and be in another Grand Final and being at Suncorp, I think that’s special to get out there in front of the Queensland fans,” McKay said.

“Hopefully we can finish it off on Sunday.”

Matt Smith will skipper the side in a decider for the second time having assumed the captaincy following McKay’s departure, though the latter does not miss the greater duties of Grand Final week.

“It’s been a nice quiet week, it’s been great,” the Socceroo said.

“Wherever I am in the team … if I can help then I’m happy to be back.”

Roar are this season unbeaten in three matches against Sunday’s opponents Western Sydney, though their overall record against the Wanderers includes only one victory from seven meetings.

McKay expects a typically combative performance from last season’s beaten finalists.

“They’re a pressing side, they like to get stuck in,” he said.

“We’ll need a strong referee and we like to play flowing football but that won’t affect us.

“We respect them, they respect us, that’s why we work hard as both teams do and that’s why we’re at the top of the ladder and playing in the Grand Final.”

Attacker Dimitri Petratos proved his fitness at a wet Ballymore Stadium on Friday and will line up alongside Luke Brattan, who is also set for his first start in a Grand Final.

McKay predicted the younger faces of the squad, which on Sunday could also include all of James Donachie, Jack Hingert and Steven Lustica, would handle the occasion.

“They look like they’re really enjoying it,” the 31-year-old said.

“It’s a bit more attention for them and I think they’ll strive off that.

“It’s a big occasion and we all say everyone wants to play in them and they’re no different the young boys. They’ve worked hard to get to this position.”

Matt Dorman

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