A Hiro For The Cup

Jun 06, 2019 by

Brisbane Strikers fullback Hiroki Omori says he is determined to secure the club a return to the national stage of the FFA Cup.

Brisbane Strikers travel to Gold Coast Knights on Friday night in the final Preliminary Round of this year’s competition – with the winner advancing to the Round of 32.

The match offers Brisbane Strikers their best chance at appearing in the national stages of the competition since 2016 after early round eliminations in recent years.

For the Japanese born Omori – who has previously represented the club on the national stage in the FFA Cup and the National Premier Leagues Finals Series – the match again provides an opportunity to to face some of the best clubs in the country.

“The FFA Cup is always very exciting for me,” Omori explained.

“Two years ago we played against Melbourne City and that was a big game and a great experience. I want to again play against an A-League team for Brisbane Strikers again.”

Seeking to thwart his ambitions is a Gold Coast Knights side that will boast home ground advantage for the clash and whose only defeat this season came back in March.

“I think this is the biggest game of the season for us,” Omori said.

“We want to do well in the FFA Cup but also we know it will be hard because they are a team that is playing well and have good players.”

“The first thing we need to do is defend well and then, in attack, every player has to work hard if we are to win. It is very important we all play our best.”

Brisbane Strikers have only once previously met Gold Coast Knights in a competitive fixture – succumbing to a heavy 6-1 defeat against them in the National Premier Leagues earlier this season.

However, Omori said that result was not indicative of the current full-strength Brisbane Strikers side that has recaptured winning form in recent months and stood toe-to-toe with the best teams in the National Premier Leagues.

“Everyone is back from injury now. We are playing well and scoring goals each week and winning games,” he explained.

“I also had an injury early this year but I am now feeling good and getting better with every game too.”

With the FFA Cup always offering the possibility of drama and the unexpected, Omori acknowledged that he was surprised that Brisbane Strikers had not previously endured a penalty shoot-out in the national knock-out competition.

Reflecting on his past experiences in his native country, Omori said he would not shirk the opportunity to test his mettle in a nail-biting finale come Friday night.

“I have been in a penalty shoot-out before in Japan and I am confident in my ability if we need to do that.”

“Depending on my condition at the end of the game, hopefully I will be one of the players to take a penalty and help us win that way if we have to.”

Brisbane Strikers have already seen off two fellow National Premier Leagues sides on the road in the preliminary rounds following strong wins over Lions FC and Eastern Suburbs FC.


Preliminary Round 7

Gold Coast Knights v Brisbane Strikers
Friday, June 7 @ 7:30PM
Croatian Sports Centre, Gold Coast

Admission: FREE


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