The Big Five Answers | round 23

Adelaide would take care of business we said. The Roar would be the victims of a stampede we said. We were quite obviously wrong.

Adelaide United v Brisbane Roar: Can the Reds take the advantage? Adelaide would take care of business we said. The Roar would be the victims of a stampede we said. We were quite obviously wrong.

We like to think of ourselves as reasonably well informed - but everything we said turned out wrong. Brisbane in this game remembered who they used to be and as the monkey said in The Lion King “The king has returned”.

Given we compared the Roar before this round to a dying Mufasa it-s only fair that we now compare them to the triumphantly returning Simba. The Roar found their bite and delivered a performance

The Roar may have only won the match 1-0, but as Mike Mulvey said it was one of the best one-nil victories he has ever seen.

Brisbane Roar were fluid with the ball, they kept it, their passes hit the mark. Besart Berisha was busy, while Thomas Broich joined Luke Brattan in an in-form midfield as they bossed the Reds. If this is what Brisbane do truly have to offer and they can replicate then they could go back-to-back-to-back against all the odds.

As for Adelaide... they were woeful and can thanks Eugene Galekovic for saving their hides. The less said about their effort the better.

Central Coast Mariners v Western Sydney Wanderers: Who really are the big boys? We-re not too sure our question got answered, because the Mariners dominated the match, but couldn-t get the result they deserved. In a match of missed chances, the Wanderers took the one that mattered.

Were they the best side? No. Did they win the game and go top? Yes.

Sometimes football isn-t about rewarding the better team. It-s one of the cruel nuances of the sport and this was the case at Bleutongue Stadium as the Wanderers ripped the dressing off some old wounds of the Mariners leaving them to bleed all over the pitch.

Too often penalties have been an issue for Graham Arnold-s side in recent years and this time the doubt crept over Mat Ryan as the keeper stepped up and fluffed a pretty bad penalty straight down the middle allowing Ante Covic to save and become the hero yet again.

The win also gave the Wanderers a record eight-straight victories but, more importantly, saw them beat the only team they had failed to so far this season. They did so on the back of some brilliant defending.

We said they had to take their game to the next level. They didn-t but they did take their resolve up a level and it was good enough to go top of the league.

Perth Glory v Sydney FC: Can the Glory get some love? Finally the Glory got the rub of the green and got the three points they so desperately needed to keep their flagging fortunes alive.

As they were the week prior, the team played organised football and looked to attack from the outset. A strategy that served them well early on with both Shane Smeltz and Chris Harold finding the net either side of Alessandro del Piero-s screamer of a goal.

Perhaps it was no surprise that the pace of Ryo Nagai and Chris Harold troubled the aging Sydney FC defence - Qantas Socceroos captain Lucas Neill in particular - and helped them to get the three points.

Perth were the better side they attacked and were rewarded. Sydney though have now lost two straight their season taking yet another downward turn in what has truly been one wild rollercoaster ride.

Wellington Phoenix v Melbourne Heart: Can Heart avoid travel sickness? The short answer to that question is no. Melbourne Heart were dominated by Wellington Phoenix in a match that was a must-win game for them.

A number of other visiting teams have taken advantage of the Nix-s poor form and the Heart not beating them is three points dropped in the race for the finals.

At no point during the match did John Aloisi-s men look like they were going to trouble Wellington, who took the game to them with Leo Bertos and Paul Ifill getting the freedom of the pitch. Yet again they left Melbourne and lost their way from the get-go.

Wellington rattled the woodwork three times in the opening 15 minutes before Jeremy Brockie put them in front.

It's too late to save their season, but Wellington looked to have gained some confidence from the game. Heart couldn-t have been worse and if they can-t win away, they may as well not bother with playing finals.

Melbourne Victory v Newcastle Jets: Who will step up? No one stepped up for the Jets, and try as he might, Mark Birighitti couldn-t keep the Victory from penetrating his net over and over again. The Jets were woeful; they put an NYL-like line-up on the field and were duly belted by one of the big boys of the competition.

For their part, Victory were fantastic and they had several players step up. In a week where penalty takers were made to look ridiculous, Mark Milligan showed how to take not one but two properly. Marco Rojas delivered his best performance in weeks and Archie Thompson proved beyond any doubt that he is still the most important player on Victory-s roster.

Archie stepped up big time playing in the false 9 role that is usually reserved for Marcos Flores and his impact was instant, freeing Rojas from the shackles and in turn that set Connor Pain loose.

So who stepped up? Archie Thompson did and it allowed his teammates to follow suit. Victory are a better side with Archie, he is their talisman and leader.