Sydney FC Head Coach Graham Arnold has confirmed captain Alex Brosque will return to the Sky Blues starting lineup for Saturday’s clash against Perth Glory at Allianz Stadium (kick off 5:15pm).
Arnold also stated that new signing David Carney would make his starting debut, praising the duo for the quality they bring to the setup as Sydney FC return to full strength with nine Hyundai A-League games remaining.
“He [Brosque] will definitely start,” Arnold said.
“Preparation has been good, I think having Alex Brosque back training fully has given the team a lift, obviously getting our captain back.
“He’s played 25 minutes in eight weeks, so it’s been a long stint out for him. David Carney has fitted in better this week, he only had one or two sessions, so he’ll start as well.
“Brosquey has played at number 9 in two games before he got injured. At Newcastle, he scored and we were outstanding that game, the combination between him and Ninkovic and Holosko was very good and then he played for 25 minutes against the Mariners and when he went off we were up 3-0.
“In the A-League salary cap system, if your marquees aren’t playing or something it can hurt you, Brosquey is our marquee and he brings a lot of quality to the team.
“Carney has brought plenty of laughter at the moment, he hasn’t played that much, but I thought the 20 minutes he came on last week he added a lot to the game,” Arnold continued.
“The opposition look at him and fear him as well because of his reputation and what he can do. Carney brings a lot of quality and it’s just a matter of him gelling with the players around him. If you give him the ball he can change a game.”
Sydney FC haven’t faced Perth Glory since a 2-1 defeat in December 2014, and Arnold is expecting another tough encounter as he called for his squad to step up and build on their performances from the first 18 games of the season.
“For me, the first 18 games is about getting yourself in a position to be able to be successful and win something, we’ve done that,” he said.
“We’ve had a bit of inconsistency over the first 18 games, I feel our performances have been good in patches during games but now we have to start playing for 90-95 minutes and getting the right results.
“With nine games to go it’s about no more excuses and every player stepping up to the plate, and performing to the best of our ability.
“I think it’s been over a year since we played them [Perth Glory] at home, and they won,” Arnold continued.
“They’re a dangerous side, Kenny Lowe is a fantastic coach, you look at where they were last year until the salary cap problems, they were top spot.
“He’s doing a great job but the hardest thing for Perth is the travel. They’ve had to stay in Wellington all week after playing Wellington on Sunday, and that’s not the best place to stay for a week.”
Sydney FC take on Perth Glory in their next home match at Allianz Stadium on Saturday 13 February (kick off 5:15pm). Tickets are still available, get yours now!