Roar’s fairytale in Wanderland?


Jade North says the manner in which Brisbane Roar stunned Melbourne Victory in last weekend’s Elimination Final augers well for their grand final decider at Wanderland on Sunday.

While Roar’s road form has been patchy this season, they have already defeated Wanderers at Wanderland, an eye-catching 3-1 triumph on the opening weekend of the season.

The Brisbane outfit has made a habit of getting it done in the finals, producing late heroics to win all three of their Hyundai A-League championships.

They did it again last weekend, with late goals from Matt McKay and Thomas Broich handing them a thrilling stoppage-time 2-1 win over the Big V. 

North admits it’s that kind of miraculous escape that has him thinking destiny could be on Queenslanders’ side this season when they face the Wanderers in Sunday’s semi final (the winner progressing straight into the grand final). 

“If Matt [McKay] can score with his right foot and Thomas [Broich] with his header, that gives us all confidence,” North told reporters with a smile on Wednesday.

Matt McKay

“We are a confident outfit at the moment, we have had some good form coming in [to the Finals Series].

“Obviously we started off a bit slow first half against the Victory but that to me is a sign of a good side – that you can correct things at half-time and still go on and win the game.”

North has won Hyundai A-League Championships and played for the Caltex Socceroos but the veteran defender says winning a title this season would be one of his career highs.

It was barely a year ago the club was facing an uncertain future, with the club having nowhere to train and embroiled in financial trouble.

But fast-forward and the side – with coach John Aloisi in his first year in charge – has shown great resolve and spirit to be within one game of a grand final.

Only Western Sydney Wanderers at Pirtek Stadium on Sunday stands between the Roar and their fourth decider in six years.

And North – a title winner with both the Jets (2008) and Roar (2014) – admits the squad is dreaming of more championship glory and capping a “fairytale” rise for the club.

Jade North

“We are still a long way from the final yet, but to play in another Grand Final would be, for this season anyway, the icing on the cake.

“The start that we had and everything that was happening at the club at the time, but we have held it together and this is the moment that we can really make a fairytale ending.

“All the boys have put in with the coaching staff, it’s just been a great story for us. 

“If we can get to the final and win it that would be a massive, massive achievement and will go down as one of my greatest moments. 

“There is still a long way to go but you can always dream.”

The winner of Sunday’s clash will face either Adelaide United or Melbourne City in the season decider on Sunday, May 1.