Thomas Kristensen scored a first-half brace as the Roar waltzed to an easy A-League win over a flat United.
Snapping a frustrating run of four straight 1-1 draws for the Roar, Kristensen’s two goals came within the space of just three minutes, and both were served on a platter by Socceroo hopeful Tommy Oar.
Veteran Thomas Broich added the third in the 55th minute, steering a well-timed header past Adelaide captain Eugene Galekovic from a smart Dimitri Petratos free kick, while a late Jamie Maclaren penalty was the final dagger.
“We could feel it coming. They were very good goals we scored,” Roar coach John Aloisi said.
“We knew we were going to create chances and we just said we need to be ruthless and it was good to get four goals.”
The Roar remain fourth on the ladder, equal on points with Melbourne Victory and one behind Melbourne City, but have closed the gap on runaway leaders Sydney FC to seven points.
They’ve also opened up a handy five-point gap over fifth-placed Perth Glory.
“You don’t want to get too far away from the leading pack. We’re there or thereabouts, but we know there’s still a long way to go,” Aloisi said.
For the Reds, it was a harsh reality check after breaking through for their first win of the season last week, and any hopes of a similar run to last season’s sensational march to the premiership-championship double looks unlikely.
However, coach Guillermo Amor felt the scoreline didn’t properly reflect the game.
Adelaide finished with a whopping 19 corners to Brisbane’s three and had more shots on goal but rarely looked threatening.
Their best chances came late on when the match was already settled, with Iacopo La Rocca’s crossbar-rattling header in the 64th minute the closest they got to finding the back of the net.
“The result we know is negative, but the team was good, in moments we controlled (the game) well, the attitude was not bad,” Amor said.
It was an unhappy return to Suncorp Stadium for former Roar fan favourite Henrique, who was received warmly by the 15,605 in attendance but was responsible for the handball that gave away Maclaren’s 85th-minute spot kick.
Maclaren nearly opted out of the match because of the recent death of his UK-based grandmother but decided to play on and dedicated his goal to her memory.
Broich and right-back Jack Hingert, who were both taken off in the second half with cramp, have been cleared of any injury concerns.
Make your contribution to independent news
A donation of any size to InDaily goes directly to helping our journalists uncover the facts. South Australia needs more than one voice to guide it forward, and we’d truly appreciate your contribution. Please click below to donate to InDaily.