Roar not panicking after tame draw
What Asian Champions League hangover?
From the outside looking in, the once all-conquering Brisbane Roar looked like a side that had lost its mojo after settling for a 1-1 A-League draw with lowly Adelaide United on Sunday.
But Roar coach Ange Postecoglou sounded like a contented man despite backing up their mid-week 2-0 ACL loss to FC Tokyo with a scrappy draw that cost them a chance to reclaim the A-League lead.
"That's the way football goes sometimes. We had our chances to win the game but we couldn't take them," he said.
"You can't fault the effort of the players and I thought we kept our composure.
"You can easily get frustrated but I thought the boys waited for their opportunities."
Obviously Postecoglou was not watching when a flat Roar duffed scoring chance after scoring chance against the second-last Adelaide United - most notably in the 80th minute.
After Besart Berisha's 70th minute effort cancelled out Iain Ramsay's 14th minute goal for Adelaide United, the Roar looked to have the winner in their sights when Kofi Danning found a wide open Thomas Broich with 10 minutes left.
But somehow Adelaide United's Anthony Golec cleared Broich's tame scoring effort not once but twice off the line to further frustrate the Roar.
In all, the usually reliable Broich made a mess of four scoring chances, summing up the Roar's night.
"I wouldn't say he had an off night," Postecoglou said of Broich.
"In front of goal he had a couple of opportunities but he still created some great openings for us - that's all you can ask for.
"On any other night he would have had a couple of goals, for sure.
"But from a coaching perspective I wouldn't ask any more of them in terms of our play and effort."
Meanwhile, the ironically named Melbourne Victory are out of finals calculations after their disappointing 1-0 loss to Sydney FC on Saturday night.
Interim coach Jim Magilton called for a clean out - but he may be the first to go with a record of one win from 10 games since taking over mid-season.
Seventh-placed Sydney FC face a simple finals equation - win the remaining games against fifth-placed Melbourne Heart (away) and sixth-placed Newcastle (home) and you're in.
Wellington Phoenix are all but ensured a home final after a halftime bake from coach Ricki Herbert and a stunning 80th minute Paul Ifill goal helped them recover to draw 1-1 with Melbourne Heart on Saturday.
Newcastle kept themselves in the finals mix after salvaging a 1-1 draw against a desperate Gold Coast United on Friday night.
But the talking point was once again ex-Gold Coast licence holder Clive Palmer after the billionaire organised a helicopter to fly a "freedom of speech" banner over the ground in another raspberry at Football Federation Australia.