Kruse begins road to redemption

Robbie Kruse will be given a golden opportunity to reignite his stuttering Hyundai A-League career on Saturday night, with Brisbane Roar coach Frank Farina confirming the youngster will start against Gold Coast United in the Queensland derby on Saturday night at Suncorp Stadium.

Robbie Kruse will be given a golden opportunity to reignite his stuttering Hyundai A-League career on Saturday night, with Brisbane Roar coach Frank Farina confirming the youngster will start against Gold Coast United in the Queensland derby on Saturday night at Suncorp Stadium.

Kruse burst onto the scene in the 2007/08 Hyundai A-League season, scoring on debut en route to a meteoric rise.

He quickly became a key figure of Farina's youth brigade that saw the Roar come within one game of the Grand Final.

Off-field indiscretions, some occurring whilst Kruse nursed a hamstring injury, saw the dynamo restricted to four appearances in the 2008/09 season, and more tellingly his stocks plummeted with Farina and the club.

The future looked doubtful.

Local media linked him to the Wellington Phoenix and even Farina has admitted the winger looked likely to miss out on a contract, but a broken leg to midfielder Massimo Murdocca paved the way for a late reprieve.

Kruse will start on the wing against United and Farina was happy to see the former fallen star had corrected his ways.

"I think his head is a bit sore because I've been slapping him about for a year and half," Farina quipped.

"He's turned himself around and it's full credit to him as an individual - but young kids make mistakes sometimes and you can't crucify them for that."

"That's part and parcel of growing as a footballer and a human being."

Farina was more than content that the former Young Soccceroo had corrected his ways.

"Robbie is always a work in progress," he said.

"He's young, he's learning and along the way he'll stumble sometimes … but you try and help them (young footballers) become better people and better players." Roar skipper Craig Moore was anticipating big things from Kruse.

"He had a quiet season with everything that happened off the park last season, if he starts again he has a fantastic opportunity to start the season and impress in the right way," Moore said.

"It's all down to him and what he wants to put into it, because it doesn't come easy - but if you work hard at it, then you will get the rewards."