Fornaroli: A deadly addition to Glory's frightening front line

Perth Glory have issued an almighty statement of intent to the Hyundai A-League with the signing of former Melbourne City striker Bruno Fornaroli.

Tony Popovic’s Premiership-chasing side have blown their opposition away this season, tallying the most goals in the league (47) and boasting the league's best conversion rate (21%).

CONFIRMED: Bruno Fornaroli signs for Perth Glory

The addition of Uruguayan marksman Fornaroli could take the free-scoring Glory attack to unprecedented heights in 2019/20.

With Andy Keogh, Diego Castro and Christopher Ikonomidis all arguably in the form of their Hyundai A-League careers, Glory are not shy of attacking impetus.


That is why the capture of the former Nacional youth, who scored 57 goals in all competitions for Melbourne City, should have the rest of the competition shaking in their boots.

He is set to make his debut for the club in July 13's high-profile friendly against Manchester United at Optus Stadium. 

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How will Glory deploy their new signing?

The thought of a fully fit and firing Fornaroli slotting into Perth's free-scoring front line should have supporters in Western Australia salivating.

Few strikers in Hyundai A-League history have captivated fans with such an elegant combination of dead-eyed striking brilliance and match-turning quality.

Bruno Signs for Perth

 

But how best to slot Fornaroli into the Perth attack without disrupting the fluid, ruthless attacking machine which has spearheaded Glory's 2018/19 Premiership charge will give boss Popovic plenty of headaches in the off-season.

The Perth taskmaster already possesses one of the Hyundai A-League's premiere forwards in Irishman Andy Keogh, who inked a year extension in March and is currently enjoying his highest ever goal return in Australia (13).

Popovic has favoured 3-4-2-1 and 3-4-1-2 formations this season, a system tailored to harness the athleticism of Ikonomidis (eight goals), the playmaking wizadry of Castro (six goals), and Keogh's tireless leading of the attack.

The deadly trio have all received able support from experienced Hyundai A-League attackers Joel Chianese and Fabio Ferreira, who have each made valuable contributions to the club's record-breaking season.


Fornaroli was frequently utilised as a central striker during his time in Victoria, supported by wide attackers such as Nick Fitzgerald, Harry Novillo and Fernando Brandan.

But having pledged his allegiance to Glory, El Tuna would likely partner Keogh should Popovic wish to accommodate both his prized forwards in 2019/20.

Should Diego Castro's signature be confirmed for Glory next season, it would potentially leave the ex-La Liga veteran and Ikonomidis vying for a position to sit behind Keogh and Fornaroli.

An almighty selection conundrum indeed, but one any coach would envy.

Chris Ikonomidis celebrates a goal against the Mariners on Sunday.
Andy Keogh and Chris Ikonomidis will relish the arrival of Bruno Fornaroli

A point to prove and legacy to seal

Fornaroli was a cult hero for City and may be recognised as one of the Hyundai A-League's all-time great imports, but that will not guarantee him a starting spot at Perth.

In fact, the hard work begins now for the forward, whose long and drawn-out exit from City must surely have come at some detriment to his sharpness.

However, given the proven quality and character of the man, Fornaroli is surely hungry to remind Australia of his mercurial talent and banish the memories of his disappointing final days in Melbourne.

He will also be intent on chasing Hyundai A-League silverware, which would confirm his status as one of the competition's best imports.

The next chapter of Fornaroli's career in Australia is going to be a fascinating one.