McLean Relishing Tough FFA Cup Draw

Apr 17, 2019 by

Brisbane Strikers captain Jake McLean has welcomed the challenge of facing Lions FC in Round 5 of the FFA Cup.

Brisbane Strikers were drawn away to the defending National Premier Leagues Queensland Champions in the next round of the national knock-out competition during Tuesday night’s live draw by Football Queensland.

The tie marks the third time the two former National Soccer League clubs have been pitted against each other in the competitions Preliminary Rounds since 2014.

Part of the team that eliminated Lions FC from the competition in 2016, McLean said he and his teammates will be aiming for a repeat this year.

“We’ve got a good rivalry with Lions. It will be an interesting game and we will all be very excited to play it,” McLean explained.

“We all want to go as far as we can in the FFA Cup and to do that you have to play against strong teams like Lions eventually.”

“Of course, we will go there looking to win. A lot of good stories come from the FFA Cup and hopefully we can write one for ourselves in this game.”

The two sides have already clashed twice this season – once in the pre-season Kappa Silver Boot tournament and again in the National Premier Leagues a month ago.

Absent through injury in the 4-0 defeat Brisbane Strikers incurred in the last meeting with Lions FC, McLean said he expects a closer contest this time around – with Brisbane Strikers regaining winning form in recent matches.

“It’s no secret that we had a few injuries in the last game. But we will go there with a full-strength team this time,” he explained.

“We expect to win every game we play, but we also have something to prove this time. So hopefully everyone steps up.”

“The game is still a couple of weeks away too, so before then we will look to keep these wins going and carry some momentum into the game as well.”

Further driving McLean is his desire to return to the national knock-out rounds of the competition after previously enjoying wins on the national stage with Olympic FC, Oakleigh Cannons and Brisbane Strikers.

“The first three years of the FFA Cup I was part of teams that went to beyond the Round of 32 and that was an amazing feeling,” he said.

“In the last few years I haven’t been as fortunate, but I will definitely look to draw on that experience from those big games as we look to qualify again.”

“I know there are a lot of young boys in our team now that haven’t been in that situation before, so I will do everything I can to encourage them to step up because each FFA Cup game is a one-time only opportunity.”

Match details are yet to be confirmed for the match against Lions FC, with possible dates ranging from April 29 to May 5.

Brisbane Strikers will get a gauge of their progress before then with National Premier Leagues matches against in-form Gold Coast Knights and Olympic FC prior to the next FFA Cup tie.

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