Adelaide United v Brisbane Roar – Saturday 21 February 2009
This season we will be looking ahead to the Reds' Hyundai A-League matches by rolling back the clock and revisiting some of the clubs most memorable clashes against our upcoming opponents.
With Adelaide United set to face current A-League champions, Brisbane Roar, at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday, we look back at a truly memorable twilight fixture between the two clubs from the 2008/09 Season.
After suffering a 6-0 aggregate loss to Melbourne Victory in the major semi-final a week before, confidence was low throughout the Reds' squad especially after conceding four goals at home. Roar on the other hand were full of belief having convincingly beaten Central Coast Mariners 4-1 overall in their minor semi-final.
The preliminary final at Coopers Stadium was impossible to call considering only two points separated the sides at the end of the domestic campaign and the last match they played finished scoreless.
Having future Reds Sergio van Dijk and Michael Zullo amongst their ranks, then coach, Frank Farina, boasted a strong starting XI with the likes of a teenage Mitch Nichols and Socceroo regular, Craig Moore also in the Brisbane squad.
Although, Aurelio Vidmar’s United had quality of its own with now club-captain, Eugene Galekovic between the posts, Cássio and Saša Ognenovski in defence, and Cristiano leading the line. But it would be 24-year-old midfielder, Fabian Barbiero, who would prove to be the difference.
After a tense start to the match, which saw the ball being constantly fought for, a long and hopeful effort was sent towards Cristiano by Galekovic from the edge of his 18-yard-box.
In an attempt to stop an attack progressing, Moore tried to head the ball clear, but instead provided the perfect knockdown for Barbiero – who controlled and then latch onto an incredible right-footed volley from 19-yards out. The ball scraped past the underside of the crossbar and cannoned into the top left corner or the net and after 25 minutes United were up 1-0.
The remaining 65 minutes of play would see Brisbane increase the intensity of the match, as they searched for the equaliser. But their efforts wouldn’t materialise into goals as the league’s tightest defence retained a clean sheet on the evening.
If you would like to relive this beautiful moment further, click here to watch Barbiero’s glorious strike for yourself.
Saturday, 21 February 2009
Hyundai A-League 2008/09 Season - Preliminary Final
Adelaide United FC 1 (Barbiero 25‘)
Brisbane Roar 0
Venue: Hindmarsh Stadium