Despite enduring a "shocking" playing surface for the biggest game in his club's short history, Queensland coach Frank Farina says the Roar only has itself to blame for failing to secure a maiden A-League finals berth.
Farina believes the Suncorp Stadium turf, re-laid after a recent Robbie Williams rock concert, was responsible for the first half goal Queensland conceded in its 1-1 draw with a 10-man Sydney FC on Saturday night.
However, Farina said the club would not lodge an official complaint to the Brisbane venue's officials about the slippery surface after pointing the finger squarely at Queensland's missed chances.
Queensland needed to win its final regular season game to taste finals football for the first time but the draw ensured Sydney FC leapfrogged the Roar into a top four finals spot.
The home side dominated early only to have former Roar striker Alex Brosque draw first blood for Sydney FC in the 13th minute when he found himself open after Queensland defender Remo Buess slipped on the loose turf.
"I think the goal we conceded had a lot to do with conditions," Farina said.
"Unfortunately it looked like the ground gave away underneath him (Buess) - it's disappointing to concede a goal like that." But asked whether he would take it up with stadium officials, Farina said: "No, some new turf had been laid but the ground staff are great here.
"We had the game by the scruff of the neck in the second half, we just didn't squeeze tight enough." Roar skipper Andrew Packer was more direct in his criticism of the surface.
"It was shocking, mate. It was terrible. If you looked at it after the match there were holes in it everywhere," he said.
"But both teams had to deal with it and we had our chances and we didn't take them." After Damian Mori drew level in the 20th minute - sending a record 32,371-strong crowd into hysterics - the veteran Roar striker looked to have snatched the matchwinner with a stunning 60th minute flying volley but was matched by keeper Clint Bolton's diving save.
Queensland again looked home nine minutes later but Brazilian striker Reinaldo fluffed a header right in front.
"I am very disappointed for the club but we threw everything at them...there was nothing left to throw," Farina said.
"But in reality we should have scored in the second half and we didn't, and you've got to win these games to be a serious contender in the finals." There's no rest for Farina - he said recruitment for the 2007-08 season would start today as he mulls over seven off-contract high profile players including foundation skipper Chad Gibson.