Returned Strikers Defender To Make FFA Cup Impact

Apr 30, 2019 by

Brisbane Strikers defender Michael McGowan is aiming to make an immediate impact in this year’s FFA Cup.

Absent from Brisbane Strikers’ club record 10-1 win over Souths United in the previous round, McGowan will make his first appearance in this year’s competition against Lions FC on Wednesday night.

The 31-year-old’s value to Owen Baker’s squad was highlighted after returning to the starting line-up in Sunday’s hard-fought away draw to National Premier Leagues high-flyers Olympic FC.

That appearance came just hours after McGowan returned to Brisbane following a family wedding in his native Scotland, and he is eager to build on that showing against Lions FC in the winner-take-all cup environment.

“Olympic are a strong team. For us to get a point at their ground was a step in the right direction but I am also not satisfied with it,” McGowan explained.

“This team and myself, we go in to every game wanting to win and we know are a long way from where we want to be.”

“We did stray away a bit from the traditional Brisbane Strikers philosophy against Olympic but we did what we had to do to get the result. Sometimes you have to do that.”

Despite battling fatigue from his flight home, McGowan’s return marked the first time this season Brisbane Strikers have fielded a full-strength back four – something that augers well for the looming midweek clash.

“At the start of the season we were only conceding a goal a game until a few of us got injured – myself, and Matty Richardson at the back and also Jake McLean in the midfield.”

“So having everyone back and with a full-strength back four, I think we can build some consistency now and that will reflect more in the results.”

McGowan’s injury lay-off also saw him miss Brisbane Strikers’ previous National Premier Leagues clash with Lions FC – a four goal defeat at Lions Stadium in March.

However, he stressed that while that result is not forgotten, it also counts for nothing in the FFA Cup.

“Lions beat us four-nil earlier in the season. They are a strong team so we know it is going to be a difficult game.”

“But it is also always a bit of a different proposition in the FFA Cup where it is a one-off game.”

“We know that if everyone applies themselves we can give a good account of ourselves and give ourselves a good chance of advancing.”

Brisbane Strikers are aiming to return to the national Round of 32 for the first time since 2016.

That was the same year McGowan was part of the greatest ‘cupset’ in the competition’s history with his former club Redlands United eliminating then-defending Hyundai A-League Champions Adelaide United at Perry Park.

“I had one really good experience in the FFA Cup and, of course, I would like more,” McGowan said.

“Reaching that last 32 teams is up there for most people with making the finals and things like that.”

“But it is also a bit early to be looking at that – we are all just concentrating on Wednesday night against Lions at the moment.”

The FFA Cup match-up continues a long history of cup ties between Brisbane Strikers and Lions FC – with their first ever competitive meeting coming in the 1996 NSL Cup.

MATCH DETAILS

FFA Cup
Round 5

Lions FC v Brisbane Strikers
Wednesday, May 1 @ 7:00PM
Lions Stadium, Richlands

FREE entry

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