A bumper weekend of men’s football is headlined by a top four clash between Gold Coast Knights and Brisbane Roar in the NPL and a local derby between Western Pride and SWQ Thunder in the FQPL.
In the NPL, the Roar and Knights are both battling to keep pace with Peninsula Power, who are seven points clear at the top of the ladder.
The Power have won 14 out of 15 games this season but will be looking to bounce back this weekend against Moreton Bay United after losing 1-0 to Olympic FC last Saturday night.
Olympic now face local rivals Eastern Suburbs with an opportunity to leap-frog Brisbane Roar into second place.
Further north, fifth-placed Sunshine Coast Wanderers will come up against Gold Coast United with a spot in the top four up for grabs.
Elsewhere, bottom three clubs Brisbane Strikers, Redlands United and Magpies Crusaders will be in action on Saturday night as they look to lift themselves out of the relegation zone.
In the FQPL 1, second-placed Rochedale Rovers will be hoping to make it four wins in a row on Saturday night against Souths United.
Fifth-placed Mitchelton FC and sixth placed Southside Eagles both come up against bottom-four sides this weekend as they look to keep in touch with the top four.
In the FQPL 2, Caboolture FC have established a commanding five-point lead at the top of the table after winning 12 of their 14 games.
The Snakes take on third-placed Grange Thistle on Sunday evening at home, while Magic United and North Star meet on Saturday night with a spot in the top four up for grabs.
Brisbane Roar v Gold Coast Knights
Pride and points are on the line on Friday night as Brisbane Roar face bogey side Gold Coast Knights in Carrara.
The Roar, who have never beaten Knights in an NPL fixture, are currently second on the ladder, three points clear of Olympic and four points ahead of Knights.
The last time these two sides met, in April, the Knights came back from a goal down to win 2-1.
But Knights have dropped points over the past three weeks, drawing 3-3 with Brisbane Strikers in Round 15 and losing 3-1 to Capalaba FC last weekend.
After the draw with last-placed Strikers, Knights’ president Adrian Puljich labelled the result “an absolute disaster” and signalled that the Capalaba game would be a test “of whether we’ve learnt and grown as a team.”
For the Roar, who have won three on the trot, Friday night’s game could be an opportunity to slay the Knights and gain some ground on league-leaders Peninsula Power.
Friday 23 July, 7:30pm
Croatian Sports Centre, Carrara
Western Pride v SWQ Thunder
Round 17 of the FQPL 1 sees another Western Derby as Western Pride host SWQ Thunder in Ipswich.
Thunder is third on the ladder, seven points behind second-placed Rochedale Rovers but with two games in hand.
Pride is in fourth place, five points behind Thunder and three points clear of fifth-placed Mitchelton FC.
The last time these two sides met, in May, Thunder beat Pride 2-1 at home thanks to goals from Will Orford and Pasquale De Vita.
The Pride now have an opportunity to avenge that loss on home turf and cement their spot in the top four.
Friday 23 July, 7:45
Briggs Road Sporting Complex, Ipswich
Jheison Macuace (Gold Coast Knights): The Colombian striker has scored four goals in three games despite the Knights recent dip in form.
Louis Zabala (Brisbane Roar): The Roar captain earned a spot in the Team of the Week last weekend after a strong performance against Brisbane Strikers.
Pasquale De Vita (SWQ Thunder): Thunder’s Italian midfielder came off the bench last weekend, marking his long-awaited return from injury.
Jay Balhatchet (Caboolture FC): Scored the winning goal last weekend against Samford Rangers to earn a spot in the Team of the Week.