Maher Eyes Another Away Win

Jun 20, 2019 by

Brisbane Strikers fullback Chris Maher is aiming to see his side extend their recent run of form when they tackle Moreton Bay United on Sunday.

Facing their fourth away fixture in as many weeks, Brisbane Strikers head into the National Premier Leagues clash full of confidence following consecutive wins on the Gold Coast in the league and the FFA Cup.

The match comes at a crucial point in the season, with Brisbane Strikers and Moreton Bay United are neck-and-neck in the National Premier Leagues Queensland table – Owen Baker’s side two points ahead in seventh position.

With the match also looming as one in a series of ‘six-pointers’ for he and his teammates in the back half of the season, Maher said the team is firmly focused on capturing three points.

“Obviously spirits are high at the moment and the intensity at training has been very good,” he explained.

“There is that little bit of extra motivation once you get on a roll because everybody wants to keep doing well and keep that winning feeling going.”

“We know we have an FFA Cup Round of 32 game coming up soon and we want to make sure we bring good form into that game.”

The teams played out a nil-all draw earlier this season at Perry Park after previously meeting in the pre-season Kappa Silverboot tournament in January.

Maher explains he revels in that level of familiarity with his opponents across the course of a season.

“They are always a tough team but we also know them quite well because we’ve played them twice already this year.”

“We know where their strengths are and we know what we will be up against. Their tactics might change as a team but their players’ individual games won’t change too much.”

“So we can use that to build on the last time we played and hopefully go one better than that draw.”

While much is made of home ground advantage in football generally, Maher said he believes the more compact Wolter Park pitch will suit Brisbane Strikers’ technically adept central third.

His assertion is supported by the statistics, with Brisbane Strikers losing just three times in eight previous visits to the venue.

“I think our midfield is the best going around at the moment in Fraser Hills, Jake McLean, Scott Halliday, Cade McDermott and Ryan Palmer,” he explained.

“They have the touch you need to operate on a smaller pitch like Wolter Park and I think you will see that this weekend.”

He wryly added, “The smaller pitch is also good for me because it’s not as far to run when getting forward and back.”

Maher’s memories of the venue are not all positive though – with he and Fraser Hills the only two remaining players from the team’s narrow 2015 Grand Final defeat at Wolter Park.

Despite the turnover of players at both clubs, Maher said he still draws on the memory of that match whenever he lines up against Moreton Bay United.

“It is a personal thing for me in having that rivalry with them and wanting to win just that little bit more and now I am back with Brisbane Strikers after a couple of years away I can feel it even more.”

A win for Brisbane Strikers will see them retain their position in the top half of the National Premier League Queensland table.

MATCH DETAILS

National Premier Leagues Queensland
Round 21

Moreton Bay United v Brisbane Strikers
Sunday, June 23 @5:00PM
Wolter Park, Albany Creek

Admission: FREE

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