Round 19 of the A-League begins with Brisbane’s clash at home to Newcastle in a battle of two sides which start the round as last start winners.
Brisbane Roar were convincing at home in a 4-0 win over bottom placed Central Coast last Saturday, with the sides attacking movements beginning to pay dividends.
The form of Olyroos trio James Donachie, Brandon Borrello and Jamie Maclaren has played no small part the recent form since their return and is a big reason why Brisbane sit equal top of the table with just 9 games remaining in the regular season.
Newcastle meanwhile arrive in Brisbane after short week of preparation, however they should be buoyed by a win at home against Melbourne City. The Jets managed to keep the leagues highest scoring team quiet, with second half goals from Milos Trifunovic enough to give Scott Millers side a much needed three points.
Since the last time these two sides met in round 8, Newcastle have picked up just 7 points from an available 30 which has seen them slide from inside the top six to eighth on the ladder, while the Roar have picked up 19 points in the same period.
Newcastle however hold an excellent record at Suncorp Stadium with just three losses in 14 games at the venue all time. Last time the two met here in Brisbane in round 27 last season however, it was Brisbane who emerged victorious thanks to a late winner from young defender Lachlan Jackson who switched from Brisbane to the Jets in the off-season.
Brisbane Roar Squad 1) Michael Theo, 5) Corey Brown, 7) Corona, 8) Steven Lustica, 9) Jamie Maclaren, 10) Henrique, 13) Jade North, 14) Daniel Bowles, 15) James Donachie, 16) Devante Clut, 17) Matt McKay, 18) Javier Hervas, 19) Jack Hingert, 20) Shannon Brady, 21) Jamie Young, 22) Thomas Broich, 23) Dimitri Petratos, 28) Brandon Borrello. **Two to be omitted**
Newcastle Jets Squad 1) Mark Birighitti, 2) Daniel Mullen, 3) Jason Hoffman, 4) Nigel Boogaard, 5) Ben Kantarovski, 6) Cameron Watson, 7) Enver Alivodic, 8) Mateo Poljak, 9) Milos Trifunovic, 10) Leonardo, 14) Mitch Cooper, 16) Steven Ugarkovic, 17) Radovan Pavicevic, 19) Morten Nordstrand, 20) Ben Kennedy, 22) Lachlan Jackson, 24) Nick Cowburn, 28) Ryan Kitto. **Two to be omitted**
Brisbane: Theo, Hingert, North, Donachie, Brown, Corona, McKay, Petratos, Broich, Borrello, Maclaren.
Substitutes: Young, Bowles, Lustica, Hervas, Henrique.
Omitted: Clut, Brady.
All reports suggest that John Aloisi is set to stick with the side that has performed so well in the past two weeks for this match, with Corey Brown retaining the left back spot ahead of Shane Stefanutto.
That means exciting youngster Devante Clut is set to miss out yet again, with Aloisi preferring Spaniard Javier Hervas as his attacking midfielder off the bench.
Newcastle: Birighitti, Hoffman, Boogaard, Mullen, Cowburn, Poljak, Ugarkovic, Leonardo, Cooper, Alivodic, Trifunovic.
Substitutes: Kennedy, Jackson, Kantarovski, Pavicevic, Nordstrand.
Omitted: Watson, Kitto.
On the back of a strong performance against Melbourne City this past Sunday, it’s unlikely that Scott Miller will make any changes to his starting side. The fit again Ben Kantarovski and Ryan Kitto could force their way into the side via the substitutes bench, most likely in the place of Cameron Watson and Radovan Pavicevic respectively.
2015-16 Top Scorer
Brisbane: Jamie Maclaren (10)
Newcastle: Milos Trifunovic (8)
All-Time Record against Newcastle Jets