Newcastle Jets pulled off one of the more surprising victories of the A-League season with a 2-0 defeat of ladder-topping Brisbane Roar at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night. Though the Jets have had their share off successes, and indeed move up to third place with the three away points, the Roar have been by far the league's best team and rarely get shut out at home. A James Donachie own-goal gave Newcastle a first half lead before Joey Gibbs closed the door on Brisbane just minutes before full-time.
While the Roar completed 500 passes and held 66% of possession, their chances were far fewer than would be expected given such statistical dominance. Luke Brattan forced a fine Mark Birighitti save in injury-time and the Roar had other opportunities, but with only four shots on target, the passing and shooting lines were not exactly equivalent for the hosts. The failure to win also cost Brisbane the chance to be the first A-League clubs to reach 100 wins. The night marked Michael Theo's 100th game at the club, which was also soured by allowing two goals.
Brisbane will play at Sydney FC on Boxing Day at the Allianz Stadium in the hopes of reasserting themselves atop the ladder. The Jets get more of a break, next playing Adelaide United at the Coopers Stadium on Sunday December 29.
NEW Donachie (og) 34'
NEW Gibbs (Brillante) 87'
Brisbane Roar: Theo; Brown (Ferreira 84'), Smith, Donachie, Hingert (Henrique 70'); McKay, Brattan, Miller (Petratos 58'); Broich, Berisha, Franjic
Unused subs: Acton, Borrello
Newcastle Jets: Birighitti; Gallaway, Jaliens, Regan, Pepper; Zadkovich, Kantarovski (Caravella 78'); Hoole (Goodwin 67'), Brown, Brillante; Taggart (Gibbs 82')
Unused subs: Kennedy, Oxborrow