Knights need to defuse Power
IPSWICH Knights skipper Igor Sao Jose knows as well as anyone how important tomorrow's Brisbane Premier League match at Bundamba is.
Upstage second-placed Peninsula Power and the Knights may have some breathing space in the club's spirited quest to avoid relegation.
Lose against Peninsula and the situation looks dire for the Knights with other relegation contenders Albany Creek and Brisbane Force set to gain valuable points this weekend.
Sao Jose is one of the most competitive and tenacious players in the BPL, having shaken motorcycle accidents and previous injury setbacks to help his side.
However, he has a waiting game of his own after copping a knock on his right knee in the first half of last weekend's 6-0 loss to Lions.
"At the time I thought it wouldn't be too bad and I tried to keep going," Sao Jose said.
"The next day it was a bit sore and then I didn't even train on Tuesday so I'll guess I see how it goes."
He got through Thursday night training okay.
With so much on the line at Eric Evans Reserve tomorrow, Sao Jose is hoping to lead his side at the most crucial stage of the season.
"It's a huge game," the Brazilian-born footballer said.
"We have to win basically. We have no other option."
Second-placed Power are on 48 points, having 15 wins, three draws and two losses.
The seventh-ranked Knights have 26 points in the BPL, with eight wins, two draws and 10 losses.
Under the complicated relegation system where points are allocated over four grades, the Knights (219) are currently above Brisbane Force (211) and behind Albany Creek (227).
North Star are certain of being relegated, leaving the Knights, Force and Albany Creek fighting for survival.
The Knights also have to play Capalaba away in their final round of games with Brisbane Force having the easier draw against Uni and Albany Creek meeting North Star.
Sao Jose urged his teammates to show their true fighting spirit.
"If you don't believe that we can't win the game, you might as well not turn up," he said.
Defender Daniel Cunha is expected back in a timely boost after the Knights capitulated 6-0 to Lions last week.
In Capital League 2 games this weekend, the Ipswich City Bulls and Western Spirit play away tonight against Newmarket and Samford respectively.
The Bulls are clinging to hopes of making the top four for the playoffs. They need to win their remaining games to have any chance.
City's Reserve grade side are in fourth and will contest the finals if they can win their last two games.
National Premier League: Tonight (7pm) - Western Pride (12th) v FNQFC (5th) at the Briggs Road Sporting Complex, Flinders View. Yellow Hearts Day community activities start at 2.30pm as part of fundraiser for Allison Baden-Clay's three children.
Brisbane Premier League: Tomorrow (3.15pm) - Ipswich Knights (7th) v Peninsula Power (2nd) at Eric Evans Reserve, Bundamba. Reserves at 1pm.
Capital League 2: Tonight (6pm) - Ipswich City (7th) v Newmarket (2nd) at McCook Park. Reserves at 4pm. Ipswich City Bulls are in fourth and vying for a finals spot.
7pm: Western Spirit (8th) v Samford Rangers (12th) at Samford Parklands. Reserves at 5pm.
SEQ Women's Premier League 2: Today (4.30pm) - Western Pride v Annerley at Briggs Road Sporting Complex.
Brisbane Women's Premier League: Today (3pm) - Ipswich Knights v Peninsula Power at AJ Kelly Park.