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Late Solorzano strike downs Phoenix

Brisbane Roar has kept its season alive with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Wellington Phoenix at Suncorp Stadium on Monday night.

Jean Carlos Solorzano was the hero for the home side, volleying home the winner in the second minute of injury time to give Brisbane an unlikely but much needed win.

A scoreless first half turned into a goal fest in the second with five goals finding the back of the net in the last 40 minutes of the match.

Brisbane was buoyed by the return of three of their biggest stars, Thomas Broich, Matt McKay and goalkeeper Michael Theo. Broich produced a man of the match performance in just his first match back after being sidelined for seven weeks through injury. The German playmaker showed fans just why his side had struggled without him, setting up two of Brisbane’s three goals.

Five-time A-League premiership winning goalkeeper Michael Theo returned from a broken hand for his first game of the season, while Matt McKay returned from Socceroos duties.

Nathan Burns started up front for Wellington after also taking part in Australia’s Asian Cup triumph.

The out of form Brisbane Roar had not played for 29 days due to the Asian Cup break, and it was clear that coach Frans Thijssen had worked them hard on the training track. The Roar started the better of the two teams, looking to attack from the outset and applying solid pressure to the Phoenix defense, forcing some uncharacteristic errors from the away side.

Match Details Full match details »

Date/Time Mon Feb 2, 2015, 8:00 PMStadium Suncorp StadiumAttendance 9,263Referee Alan Milliner

However, as has been the case for most of the season, Wellington settled into the game and were extremely disciplined and compact at the back and were able to transition from defence into attack with class creating several half chances as the game progressed.

After the sides were locked at nil-all at the half time break, the intensity lifted substantially in the second.

Wellington striker Roy Krishna opened the scoring in the 50th minute, flicking home a brilliant cross from Nathan Burns, who continued his stunning A-League form. Burns danced his way down the touch-line before crossing to Krishna, whose slight touch deflected off Roar’s Jerome Polenz before dribbling into the bottom corner.

Burns showed why he was selected for the Asian Cup with a fantastic run a few minutes later, before his shot from just outside the area was blocked by Michael Theo.

Brisbane then found the equaliser just a few minutes later through a stunning header from young defender James Donachie. Broich provided the perfect corner into the box and Donachie leaped above the pack to power the header home.

Brisbane’s second goal just fifteen minutes later was reminiscent of the Championship team of last year. Broich produced a sublime through ball to the perfectly timed run of Brandon Borrello who calmly slotted the ball past Glen Moss to give the Roar the lead.

Brisbane looked headed for its first home win of the season, before a fortuitous goal got the Pheonix back on level terms. Roar keeper Michael Theo attempted to clear the ball from a back pass, when Wellington substitute Kenny Cunningham sprinted towards him and managed to block the ball, seeing it fall into the back of the net.

The Brisbane Roar of earlier this season may have been unable to regain the momentum, however the Roar clicked back into gear and produced a stunning late goal to give their fans a slender hope of finals actions.

Former Western Sydney player Jerome Polenz showed why Brisbane brought him back to the A-League, with a beautifully waited cross to Solorzano who volleyed home into the bottom corner.

The win was just Brisbane’s second at home this season, and sees them sit just four points outside the top six.


Ultimate A-League ‘Player of the Year’ Votes
3 Thomas Broich (Brisbane Roar)
2 Adam Sarota (Brisbane Roar)
1 Nathan Burns (Wellington Phoenix)
Youth James Donachie (Brisbane Roar)

About the author

avatarBen is a Journalism graduate, a Melbourne Victory fan and contributor to Ultimate A-League.

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