Spoils shared with Roar in tough McKellar contest

Canberra United and Brisbane Roar shared the spoils in a tight contest on Thursday night at McKellar Park.

The 7:30 kick off saw both teams play in the sweltering Canberra heat, with temperatures as high as 37 degrees.

The heat did not stop United early though as they came out firing and dominated the early proceedings in the first 20 minutes of the match.

Rhoda Mulaudzi netted the opener just two minutes in, pinching the ball off Brisbane centre-back Clare Polkinghorne and rounding Mackenzie Arnold before slotting it home from a tight angle.

The heat soon took its toll on players with chances hard to come by as the game wore on.

Muladudzi went down in the 14th minute, allowing both teams to have a breather and marking the first drinks break of the match.

The half continued with chances few and far between but the Roar equalised seven minutes before the break.

The ball was whipped in from the left with pace by Yuki Nagasato and Allira Toby thundered a header past Sham Khamis in the Canberra goal to draw her side level.

Both sides battled it out to the half and headed into the sheds locked at 1-1.

United had a great chance just 10 minutes into the second half as Ellie Carpenter made headway down the wing before firing a ball in to Mulaudzi but she directed the ball straight at Mackenzie Arnold in the Roar goal.

Ashleigh Sykes received a massive ovation from the crowd as she replaced Laura Hughes with just over 30 minutes to play and looked good throughout her stint.

The 1358 strong crowd applauded Sykes every touch, as she worked her way into the game creating numerous opportunities.

United threw everything at Brisbane in the final stages of the game as they pushed for a late winner.

Returning Canberra forward Maria Rojas had the chance to grab the headlines in stoppage time, but she blazed her effort over the bar from the edge of the area.

United now turn their attention to a clash with high-flying Perth at Dorrien Gardens next Thursday, needing to secure all three points to keep finals hopes alive.