The full extent of Brisbane’s disappointment over Melbourne Victory’s handling of their Besart Berisha recruitment coup finally bubbled to the surface after the Roar’s 2-1 win over Wellington.
However, nothing could wipe the smile off Roar coach Mike Mulvey’s face after Friday night’s come-from-behind effort lifted them eight points clear on top of the A-League ladder.
Mulvey claimed the Victory showed a lack of respect with the way they trumpeted Berisha’s two-year marquee signing barely 48 hours before the game.
“We had a game to prepare for on Friday and I don’t think there was much respect shown to us,” he said of the announcement of a deal beginning next season.
“We would have preferred for them to wait until Saturday morning but it is what it is.
“I have no qualms with Besart’s decision.”
It was hard to tell Mulvey was miffed as he all but cartwheeled down the sideline when Luke Brattan’s 87th-minute wonder goal iced the result.
“I thought he was (extrovert Chelsea manager) Jose Mourinho the way he performed on the sidelines – he must have been checking if the cameras were on him,” Wellington coach Ernie Merrick laughed when asked about Mulvey’s sideline demeanour.
The match provided a timely glimpse of life without Berisha who watched from the Suncorp Stadium stands after earning a last round red card – and Mulvey liked what he saw.
It was a gutsy win for a Roar outfit also without Socceroos Matt McKay (leg) and Ivan Franjic (stomach) as well as Irish import Liam Miller.
Then there was Roar debutant Devante Clut’s sublime 50th-minute goal that locked up the scores.
“I was really pleased for him but he was blowing the big ones after 65 minutes and we couldn’t get him off quick enough,” Mulvey smiled.
“I am absolutely delighted for the boy. He has trained with us since July, and he worked his socks off in midfield.
“I said to him an hour and a half before the game ‘there is a youth team game at 10.30am tomorrow but you are not playing – you are starting tonight’.”
Merrick believed the Phoenix – who had won four and snatched a draw in their previous games – could also walk away with their heads held high.
“The boys are gutted by the result but I was impressed by the performance,” said Merrick who was without Carlos Hernandez and Kenny Cunningham due to Costa Rican national duty.
“It took a really good shot by Luke Brattan to get the win.”