Mecca Bah Brisbane Strikers Man Of The Match Round 4: Brock Messenger

Apr 05, 2018 by

Strange as it may seem, our Mecca Bah Man of the Match for Round 4 would almost certainly not have won the award had the rescheduled game been played on its originally allocated weekend.

That is not in any way a comment on the football ability of defensive midfielder Brock Messenger which was, of course, fittingly recognised by Strikers fans who voted him Man of the Match in last Thursday’s 5-0 win by their team over SWQ Thunder.

But it does hint at the rapidity with which the muscular New Zealander has impressed supporters after first appearing for Strikers from the bench in Round 5 after signing from Auckland club Eastern Suburbs.

The young All Whites age international has slotted into the Strikers team and playing style in effortless fashion, despite the fact he is still battling his way back to full fitness from a short-term knee injury.

“Coming into the team, the boys have welcomed me in with open arms,” said Messenger this week, reflecting on his smooth transition into the Perry Park setup.

“It’s been great. The training’s been awesome and it helps being among a good set of lads as well. I’ve really enjoyed it.”

Messenger said that the kind of football played by some of his previous teams had also helped him to integrate at Perry Park.

“In the past, back in New Zealand and also in Finland, the teams that I’ve played for have also been possession-based teams. So they’ve really helped with being able to keep the ball, and playing it out from the back instead of just kicking it forward from every goal kick,” Messenger said.

“I was brought up in that system as well – so I think that’s just been another positive in making it easier to transition into the team”.

Messenger admitted he had not expected to be recognised by supporters for his contribution to last week’s result, given that he plays a role within the team structure that seldom attracts limelight.

“I guess it did surprise me a bit. We scored five goals, so you’d sometimes think it would go to the strikers. I do think the ‘number six’ role – the holding midfielders – are under-recognised sometimes but that’s just part of the game I guess, isn’t it? I was quietly happy about that – I didn’t expect it.”

The midfielder said he had been reasonably happy with his contribution against Thunder, but was pushing himself for more.

“I was pretty happy with my performance. I thought there were some little things I could have improved on, such as I made quite a few mistakes towards the latter end of the game,” Messenger said.

“I think that probably just reflects a bit on my fitness and making sure I get my positioning spot-on all of the game. I watched the game back and I think sometimes there were situations when I could have been in a better place, but it’s hard to see when you are on the field.

“But I thought I did a reasonable job. I thought I made some important tackles and won quite a few headers and that’s the reason I’m in there – for being physical and winning the ball back and that transitional period.”

Messenger’s Man of the Match prize is a meal for two at sponsors Mecca Bah at their Emporium, Fortitude Valley or Broadbeach restaurants.

The Mecca Bah Man of the Match Award is voted on by supporters at every home game of the Brisbane Strikers. Supporters are reminded that the award is announced in the Strikers Social Club after the game and with every purchase across the counter, supporters receive a ticket to go into a draw for a similar prize.

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