The 13th season of the A-League has kicked off in fine fashion for Melbourne City who secured a 2-0 victory over Brisbane Roar. After a slow, unconvincing start to the match it was winger Bruce Kamau who was the hero, netting a brace in the victory. However there was one player who called the shots for the Citizens and that was midfielder Luke Brattan. The three-time championship winner at Brisbane, Brattan produced a stellar performance in the win, some will argue it’s already happened, but will this be a breakout season for him?
Brattan was the most active and involved player on the field making 98 touches which was 12 better than second most Brisbane’s Jade North. In those 98 touches he completed 84.9 per cent of an attempted 73 passes. He also created two chances from his seven crosses, which was two more than Nick Fitzgerald’s five, and was two more than the number of crosses delivered by Brisbane’s team. Brattan delivered decent service into the box for City at set pieces and was unlikely not to find any of his teammates, but his distribution, especially in the first half, was a big reason for City’s dominance with the ball.
— West Sydney Football (@WestSydney) 6 October 2017
They finished with 54 per cent possession but at the beginning of the first half that number was in the early 70s-late 60s. They also made 535 passes to Brisbane’s 458.
But let’s get back to Brattan. It wasn’t just his haircut that made him look sharp. The 27-year-old has obviously been putting in the hard yards to improve his body and making him a fitter player.
He was everywhere for City, not just helping in the midfield or going forward, but defensively as well. He made three tackles, won five of 12 duels for the ball, made a clearance, and intercepted a Brisbane pass on four occasions, something only Osama Malik and North achieved more.
- Brisbane are winless in 11 matches in Melbourne, they haven’t won in Victoria since January 2014
- The Roar have loss 11 of 19 matches at AAMI Park
- Manny Muscat’s 62nd yellow card makes him the most booked player in A-League history with 65
- Massimo Maccarone became the fifth oldest player to debut in the A-League (see quiz below)
- Melbourne City glovesman Eugene Galekovic kept his 73rd clean sheet in the A-League
- Bruce Kamau has scored four goals in eight matches against Brisbane
- This was also his first brace in the A-League
- Warren Joyce became just the 17th coach to win in his A-League debut
It was a great start for Brattan, and City who started the season with a win and a clean sheet, something that they struggled to do last season, and something they will have to do consistently if they want to challenge for the title.
45′ | GOALLLL CITYYY!
— Melbourne City FC (@MelbourneCity) 6 October 2017
They’ll face a huge test against neighbours Melbourne Victory next week, and if Luke Brattan wants to prove himself as the A-League’s best midfielder he’ll have to get the better of the likes of Socceroo Mark Milligan next week.
Kickscribe’s Player Ratings
-3 Bruce Kamau
-2 Luke Brattan
-1 Bart Schenkeveld