Brisbane Roar manager Mike Mulvey has issued a call to arms to both players and fans ahead of the league-leader’s first home match of the new year on Saturday against Adelaide United.
The Roar are coming off impressive back-to-back wins in Sydney and Melbourne, however Mulvey said it his team owed the fans a similarly polished performance on their home turf after a frustrating 2-0 defeat to Newcastle Jets in their last home outing.
“The challenge to the team very clearly from me to them right now is that we have played two very good games of football against Sydney and Melbourne away from home and we owe our fans big time,” Mulvey said.
“We played poorly against Newcastle here and that is the challenge tomorrow,” he explained, “If we (perform) tomorrow, then that will be three consistently good games on the trot and that’s what we’re after.”
While continuing to strive for greater consistency from his squad, Mulvey also called upon the Roar supporters to turn off their television sets and instead watch the match at the club’s Suncorp Stadium home ground.
“What I will say to all the fans, and I will look down the barrel of the camera now and tell them – we are playing some fantastic football and we do it for you.”
“So come out and watch,” he added, “You can always go back and watch it on the replay (after the game).”
Despite the rallying cry, Mulvey was quick to scuttle the low rating given to Suncorp Stadium for atmosphere in the recently released PFA Stadium Rankings.
Roar’s home match day atmosphere managed no better than fifth in the player’s poll behind Allianz Stadium and Pirtek Stadium in Sydney, and AAMI Park and Etihad Stadium in Melbourne.
‘Our fans have been fantastic,” Mulvey stated clearly when asked about the ratings.
“I was in the office yesterday and I was looking at the trends throughout the season and I think we are tracking around about 5000 fans extra on an average (this year),” he said.
Roar have played only once at home since the end of November, and Mulvey was keen to reassure them lessons had been learned from the last-up home loss to the Jets.
“We had a good look in the mirror after the Newcastle game because we were disappointed with the overall performance and obviously the result wasn’t good either.
“We just didn’t play our best that day, I’ve heard various reasons why it didn’t happen but I’m not in the business of excuses.”
However, Mulvey added tongue-in-cheek: “But we won’t be wearing that grey shirt again tomorrow night.”