BRISBANE ROAR 1 (6) WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS 1 (5)
MELBOURNE CITY 0 PERTH GLORY 2
Thomas Broich Announces He Is Leaving Brisbane Roar
On Tuesday last week, news broke via the Courier Mail that Brisbane Roar club legend Thomas Broich would be leaving the club after not being offered a new contract for next season.
Although Roar fans had been bracing themselves for the end of the German maestro’s time at the Roar, most assumed he would be retiring and/or move into a coaching role. What they didn’t want was to hear the news first from the local newspaper (as opposed to an email from the club to members) and to hear that he was leaving the club to continue playing elsewhere (conceivably at another A-League club). It was yet another bitter pill for Brisbane Roar fans to swallow. The week leading up to the grand final saw a lot of vitriol on Facebook and Twitter directed at both coach John Aloisi and club director Craig Moore.
Although that anger has gradually subsided (a heroic finals win over the Wanderers always helps), the reality is that this legend of the club, the greatest in its short history, is now just one or two games away from finishing his time in Orange after a storied career which started in 2010 and has ultimately lead to two Premiere’s Plates, three Championships and two Johnny Warren medals. There are heroes at the club such as Matt McKay, Besart Berisha, Henrique and Matt Smith. But there is only one club legend and that man is Thomas Broich.
It’s still not clear where he’ll be moving to next but it seems the thirty six year old German feels that he has one or two more seasons left in him. It’s been reported that a move to Asia may be on the cards.
Both Brisbane Roar and Brisbane Strikers have publicly made open invitations to Broich to take on a coaching position when he retires. Roar fans might be coming to terms with saying goodbye to the great man but maybe it won’t be for good.
For now, it’s a time for reflection for Brisbane Roar supporters who must soak in every remaining second of the player that is regularly proclaimed to be the greatest foreign player in the history of the A-League.
Farewell Thomas. Thank you for the memories!
Roar Advance To The Semis With A Dramatic Penalty Shoot Out Win Over Wanderers
Brisbane Roar advanced to the semi finals of the A-League 2016/17 season in an emotionally charged game at Suncorp Stadium against the Western Sydney Wanderers.
The Roar supporters were still hurting at the news that their hero Thomas Broich would be leaving at the end of the season. The game was billed by some as being Thomas’ last appearance at Suncorp (although it is still technically possible for the Roar to host the grand final and he may have one final Champions League appearance left).
The Wanderers had the better of the first half and should have been ahead inside the first ten minutes were it not for a pair of incredible saves from Michael Theo to shut out Brendan Santalab. The Wanderers did go into the sheds 1-0 up thanks to a soft penalty awarded to them by Jared Gillette for a foul by Avram Papadopolous. Terry Antonis converted and incensed the crowd by giving them the ‘shush’ gesture with his finger pressed to his lips.
The second half was a different story altogether. An ‘honest discussion’ at half time saw the Roar reinvent themselves. Thomas Broich, who had a quiet first half, made the key pass, sliding a ball into the path of Brandon Borrello who struck the post with his strike, only for the opportunistic Jamie Maclaren to pounce on the rebound and level the scores just before the hour mark. It was Maclaren’s twentieth of the season.
The Roar looked the most likely for the rest of the game but couldn’t break down the tenacious Wanderers defence. Borrello once again came the closest after he almost converted another delightful pass from Broich. Vedran Janjetovic saved from point blank range, tipping the ball upwards as it bounced not once, but twice onto the crossbar.
A rush of blood saw Jashua Sotirio come onto the field in the 87th minute and receive two yellow cards in five minutes, reducing the Wanderers down to ten men.
In extra time, Roar keeper Michael Theo received a season-ending injury and was replaced by Jamie Young who was immediately called into action to make a save at point blank range from a wicked shot by Santalab.
With the scores locked at 1-1, the game went to penalties and after 11 perfect spot kicks, it was Jumpei Kusukami who came undone, hitting a weak strike at Young who comfortably parried it away. The Roar would advance 6-5 on penalties after a breathtaking game.
News and Notes
- Perth Glory defeated Melbourne City at AAMI Park in the other finals game. The game concluded a wretched season for Melbourne City who have won just six of their last twenty games. The pitiful performance was highlighted by some inexplicably bad defending in the opening half hour which lead to the two goals and a lifeless attempt to chase the game. City failed to land a single shot on goal in the first half, an extraordinary stat for the richest team in the competition who spent virtually all of that money on attacking players.There is quite a bit wrong at the under-performing club as they continue to underwhelm both on and off the field. Despite having Tim Cahill as a star attraction, the team consistently drew a small crowd of supporters for their games and Sunday night was no different with less than 10,000 turning out to see City in the finals. A big clean out is expected at the club in the offseason. Clearly, there are a lot of players coasting.
- A cultural point of difference between two clubs in the A-League: At the end of the Roar vs Wanderers game, the travelling RBB supporters called over a devastated Jumpei who was reeling from having missed his penalty and they gave him a hug in consolation. At the City vs Glory game, an angry band of City supporters booed their own team as they came off the field at both half time and full time.