Roar's British flavour fine with Fowler

Brisbane Roar head coach Robbie Fowler hopes his slew of British and Irish signings will help quickly build the winning culture he wants at the A-League club.

Brisbane Roar new head coach ROBBIE FOWLER poses after a A-League media opportunity at Sea World Resort in Gold Coast, Australia.
Brisbane Roar new head coach ROBBIE FOWLER poses after a A-League media opportunity at Sea World Resort in Gold Coast, Australia. Picture: Chris Hyde/Getty Images

Brisbane Roar head coach Robbie Fowler says his British influx at the A-League club is all about integration and building a winning culture.

The Liverpool legend has overseen a complete rebuild of the Roar's playing squad with 16 players from the forgettable 2018-19 campaign leaving or retiring.

In their place have come 10 new faces so far, with most hailing from English lower-league football.

Even Australian additions such as Brad Inman or Aiden O'Neill join the Roar from English clubs.

Two days into pre-season in his first full-time coaching role, Fowler says it's no coincidence he's targeted players with a similar background in putting together his squad.

'We've got the players because they're the right players. They're all excellent players ... you want players to galvanise to each other pretty quick and I just felt that was the best route to go down," Fowler said.

"If you're signing players from all different countries, it becomes a little bit longer to get them all integrated into the way you want them to play. The system you want to play and the build-up.

"There's obviously a method, and it's not just because I'm English or I want British players, they're the right players as well."

One of those new faces, Irish striker Roy O'Donovan, said the lure of playing under Fowler had been a key factor in his move.

The 33-year-old said he was probably set to extend his stay at the Newcastle Jets before discussing a move to Roar with Fowler.

"He doesn't need this job, he wants this job because he wants to be successful as a coach," O'Donovan said.

"Him coming here and bringing his family all the way out from England, it just shows you he's invested.

"If the players aren't they're not going to play, you've got to be 100 per cent in with him and do the right thing and he'll look after you."

Fowler says after months of planning, he's loving finally being on the pitch overseeing training as he gets to grips with his new position.

The ex-England striker's first competitive match at the helm will be an FFA Cup round-of-32 clash with A-League champions Sydney FC on August 7 at Leichhardt Oval.

Fowler, who had stints with North Queensland Fury and Perth Glory in the latter stages of his playing career, is welcoming the challenge of tackling the Sky Blues.

"I think it's a magnificent game for myself to start," he said.

"It's a magnificent game for the players. Of course it's a tough game but I think every game can be tough.

"There's no pressure on us whatsoever. We're playing against the reigning champions, maybe all the pressure will be on Sydney?"


AAP