Brisbane Roar skipper Matt Smith hopes Brisbane’s marquee player curse doesn’t strike again this week against Perth Glory, denying Queensland football fans the chance to see the A-League’s latest marquee star, William Gallas.
Suncorp Stadium has been an unhappy hunting ground for visiting marquees this year. Alessandro Del Piero and Shinji Ono both limped off injured in their visits earlier this year, while Harry Kewell was absent for the fixture against Melbourne Heart.
Smith hoped local supporters wouldn’t be denied again in regard to Gallas and said he was looking forward to the challenge provided by the former French international and English Premier League star.
“As players you want to play against the best players, absolutely no doubt about it,” Smith asserted.
“I hope that he does play, I hope that he plays for the full ninety minutes, and I hope that it’s a good spectacle for football.”
Gallas limped off with a groin complaint after half an hour in Glory’s last start 2-1 loss to Central Coast Mariners and remains in doubt for Saturday’s clash with Roar.
The former Arsenal and Tottenham star has represented ‘Les Bleus’ on 84 occasions and was a key member of the squad that lost the 2006 World Cup Final to Italy.
However, Smith was eager to point out that with or without Gallas in the team, Roar won’t change their table-topping ways in response to Glory.
“I hope that he does play but we won’t be paying any particular attention to him, we’ll just make sure that Perth and his teammates don’t go home with the three points.”
“We wouldn’t adapt our game to suit anybody. We’ve had a culture of that and a philosophy of that over the past four years at the club.”
“We don’t change our system according to opposition players or their formation.”
Roar are undefeated in three homes games this season and Smith said he hoped the team would continue the run of form following haphazard home performances last season
“We were disappointed with our home form last year,” Smith conceded
“If you look collectively over the last four years our home form has been pretty good, but last year was the worst home form that we’ve had.”
Smith offered some suggestions for the reversal in home form so far this season.
“We have some great supporters at Suncorp Stadium. Our fans come out and really cheer us on and we, of course, we love playing at home.”
“It’s our stadium so we try to make it our fortress. We’re used to the dimensions, we’re used to the feel of the pitch and the ground and certainly that helps us going in mentally,” Smith added.