Hyundai A-League season preview: Brisbane Roar

There are few certainties in the Hyundai A-League, but one is that Brisbane Roar will feature in the Finals Series.

They've finished in the top six in each of the last seven seasons - the only side to do so.

But with some high-profile departures, including the man many believe to be the competition's greatest ever player, can Roar not only continue that run, but challenge for the silverware in 2017/18?


Ins: Fahid Ben Khalfallah, Corey Gameiro, Massimo Maccarone, Mitch Oxborrow, Emilio Martinez, Petros Skapetis, Eric Bautheac.

Outs: Thomas Broich, Brandon Borrello, Jamie Maclaren, Manuel Arana, Cameron Crestani, Joey Katebian, Nathan Konstandopoulos, Tommy Oar, Kye Rowles.


What will a Thomas Broich-less Brisbane look like?

Can Massimo Maccarone bring his Serie A pedigree to the Hyundai A-League?

Will John Aloisi reach his first Grand Final as a coach?

Roar boss John Aloisi was left frustrated after his side's 0-0 draw with Sydney FC.


Keep the faith.

Roar were third at Christmas time, but a run of three consecutive losses over the holiday period had some questioning John Aloisi's tactics and selections, with Jamie Maclaren cooling his heels on the bench as speculation swirled about his club future.

But 'Macca' provided a late goal to beat Wellington and from there Roar lost just three of their last eleven games to comfortably finish in the top three.


Brisbane play the very first match of the new season away at Melbourne City before back-to-back home games against Adelaide United and Newcastle.

They then make the trip across the Tasman to meet Wellington to wrap the first month of their campaign.


Roar certainly won't be short on experience, with their squad easily the most seasoned in the Hyundai A-League 2017/18.

Matt McKay, Jade North and Mike Theo have all played over 200 games at this level, while Massimo Maccarone has clocked up two decades as a professional.

Brisbane will be hard to break down with Theo and North marshalling a tight defence, shielded by the excellent Dane Thomas Kristensen who is back for a second season.

Thomas Kristensen - Roar


Goals, and more specifically, who gets them?

Jamie Maclaren scored 20 times last season (having also notched 20 goals in 2015/16), with Brett Holman's five the next best for Brisbane.

Maclaren's departure, along with those of Thomas Broich and Brandon Borrello, leaves a massive void to fill.

There will be major scrutiny on veterans Massimo Maccarone, Eric Bautheac and Fahid Ben Khalfallah, while Nick D'Agostino will be expected to deliver in the front third.


While they have moved on from the revolutionary possession-based approach Ange Postecoglou brought to the Brisbane, Roar still pride themselves on being a passing side.

The front-third revamp will be a great test for John Aloisi, himself a former striker, with Massimo Maccarone a very different player to Jamie Maclaren.

Expect the 38-year-old Italian to play as a true number nine, rather than buzz around and turn up out wide like Maclaren did.

Everything starts at the back though; Roar will set out their stall in solid fashion with opposition sides having to work hard and be innovative to break them down.


Nick D'Agostino. The 19-year-old caught the eye in eight performances off the bench last season, scoring his first Hyundai A-League goals and proving he belongs at this level.

With Jamie Maclaren, Thomas Broich and Brandon Borrello gone, he will be targeting greater game time and John Aloisi will have no hesitation throwing the talented young striker into the fray.


A return to the glory days when Roar fans revelled in their side's success under first Ange Postecoglou and then Mike Mulvey, winning three championships in four seasons.

The new boys slot in seamlessly, Suncorp remains a fortress and Brisbane claim their first silverware since 2013/14.