Roar out to show A-League they're back

Brisbane Roar recruit Roy O'Donovan thinks the A-League club can return to their glory days.

ROY O'DONOVAN of the Mariners contests the ball with Luke De Vere of the Roar during the A-League match between the Central Coast Mariners and Brisbane Roar at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford, Australia.
ROY O'DONOVAN of the Mariners contests the ball with Luke De Vere of the Roar during the A-League match between the Central Coast Mariners and Brisbane Roar at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford, Australia. Picture: Tony Feder/Getty Images

Brisbane Roar's A-League glory days could be here again, Irish recruit Roy O'Donovan believes.

O'Donovan is one of 10 new faces enjoying their first week of the pre-season at the Roar under new head coach Robbie Fowler.

The Liverpool legend has undertaken a complete overhaul of the Roar's playing squad following a dismal 2018-19 campaign, where the three-time A-League champions won just four matches and shipped 71 goals.

Fowler's arrival has breathed new life into the club but questions remain given it is the ex-England international's first full-time head coaching role.

O'Donovan arrives at the Roar following two seasons each at the Central Coast Mariners and the Newcastle Jets.

"It's a club that seems to have things together," the 33-year-old striker said.

"Definitely infrastructure is very good. They have their own training base which is a big start. They're ahead of the game in that regard.

"Big fanbase, big stadium.

"Guys have come back in good shape. They're smiling, they're happy and they've got a point to prove which is very important when it's a season that Brisbane Roar need to show everybody what they're all about."

Securing the Irishman was a key recruitment for Fowler, who has built his squad on a mixture of Australian, British and Irish talent.

A Republic of Ireland youth international, O'Donovan played 17 English Premier League matches for Sunderland and was lured to Australia by the Mariners in 2015.

He scored 19 goals in two seasons at Gosford before scoring 20 goals across two seasons at the Jets - a period that included the 2018 A-League grand final loss to Melbourne Victory.

"He's a good player ... all the lads love him as well," Fowler said.

":He's been here for two minutes and it's as though he's been here for two or three years.

"He's a proven player in the A-League, he's a proven goalscorer. When I was aware he was available, I wanted him. He's the type of player who can better any team."


AAP