Nabbout, Victory pick Roar apart


An inspired hat-trick from Andrew Nabbout has helped the Melbourne Victory record a comfortable 5-2 win over the Brisbane Roar at Lakeside Stadium on Sunday.

An inspired hat-trick from Andrew Nabbout has helped the Melbourne Victory record a comfortable 5-2 win over the Brisbane Roar at Lakeside Stadium on Sunday.

After the two sides went into half-time level at 1-1, Nabbout changed the game in the second period with the Victory senior squad member having a hand in all four of the home side’s second-half goals.

The result sees Darren Davies’ side remain eight points off ladder-leaders Sydney FC while Brisbane stay stuck on 13 points – some 14 points adrift of the Sky Blues.

An open first half began with the Roar nearly going ahead after just five minutes with some intricate build-up play ending with a shot from Mitchell Hore, who forced Laurence Thomas into a good save from the edge of the area.

It was then the Victory’s turn to attack with a defensive error allowing Francesco Stella through on goal but he failed to keep his shot down with only Matt Acton to beat.

Nabbout, one of four senior players in the Victory’s starting line-up, nearly broke the deadlock in the 16th minute after Jesse Makarounas floated a corner to the back post, with Nabbout’s first-time volley finding the side netting.

The hosts would come to rue those misses in the 18th minute with the Roar taking the lead through a Dylan Murnane own goal after the Victory skipper failed to deal with a low cross from Brandon Borrello.

The Victory didn’t have to wait long for an equaliser however after an incisive ball from Makarounas put Nabbout through on goal, with the 21-year-old calmly rounding Acton before slotting it in from the angle.

The equaliser put a spring in the home side’s step with winger Christopher Cristaldo beginning to impose himself on the game, playing in Makarounas who couldn’t finish with only the keeper to beat.

The resulting corner was only half cleared with Jordy Brown hitting a delightful first-time pass to Nabbout who was inches away from doubling his tally with his left-footed shot scraping past the far post.

The heavens opened at the start of the second half and it seem to rejuvenate the Roar who dominated possession with Patrick Theodore nearly finding the back of the net from range, his 30-yard shot flashing past Thomas’ left-hand post.

Despite the Roar’s ascendency in possession it was the Victory who went ahead in the 65th minute courtesy of Nabbout’s second goal, with his low shot squeezing under Acton who will be disappointed he couldn’t keep it out.

It was 3-1 to the Victory immediately after with the Roar coughing up possession to Nabbout in midfield with Acton parrying his vicious drive straight into the path of substitute Anthony Proia who tapped home into an empty net.

Man-of-the-match Nabbout wasn’t finished there with his low cross evading the outstretched arms of Acton allowing a sliding Stella to bundle the ball home in the 70th minute to make it 4-1.

The Roar did manage to score a consolation through Altundag in the 87th minute before Nabbout rounded off his hat-trick in injury time to add some more gloss to the win.

Melbourne Victory 5 (Nabbout 29, 65, 90+1, Proia 67, Stella 70)
Brisbane Roar Youth 2 (Murnane OG 18, Altundag 87)

Melbourne Victory
20. Laurence Thomas (GK) 2. Christian Cavallo 3. Milos Ridesic 4. James Karvelis (15. Damien Miskulin 46) 5. Dylan Murnane (C) 6. Jordan Brown (7. Christopher Cristaldo 83) 7. Christopher Cristaldo (Anthony Proia 60) 9. Jesse Makarounas 13. Andrew Nabbout 14. Rashid Mahazi (12. Anthony Duzel 60) 18. Francesco Stella

Brisbane Roar
20. Matt Acton (GK) 2. Jack Hingert 3. Jordan Lampard (12. Shannon Brady 60) 4. Lachlan Jackson (C) 5. Sam Cronin 6. Luke Pavlou 7. Mitchell Hore 9. Samed Altundag (14. Jaiden Walker 60) 10. Devante Clut (15. Costa Psaros 41) 11. Brandon Borrello (9. Samed Altundag) 16. Patrick Theodore