Brisbane Roar’s DeVere craves stability

Young Socceroos defender Luke DeVere is hopeful more stability in the Brisbane Roar backline will be key to keeping a clean sheet when Wellington Phoenix come to Suncorp Stadium on Sunday.

Young Socceroos defender Luke DeVere is hopeful more stability in the Brisbane Roar backline will be key to keeping a clean sheet when Wellington Phoenix come to Suncorp Stadium on Sunday.

The Roar, who hold the strongest defensive record in the league’s history, have copped six goals in the opening two rounds of the season after being rocked by injuries to key defenders Andrew Packer and Josh McCloughan.

DeVere and Matt Mundy were last week employed in wide roles in defence, but the former said despite the unfamiliarity of the roles, keeping the same shape this Sunday would be beneficial.

“It’s good to learn something new and enjoying a different role,” DeVere said. “Hopefully I’ll get (more) comfortable with each game that I play there.

“Hopefully now that we get some stability we can move forward and start getting some consistency going.”

Brisbane boss Frank Farina this morning defended his team’s defensive performance, saying the circumstances in which the goals had been conceded in the past two rounds had to be taken into context.

“We copped three special goals on the weekend against Melbourne,” Farina said.

“The third one against the Gold Coast was two minutes into injury time, (when) we had to push forward, so you can’t read too much into that.”

Melbourne and the Gold Coast already look two of the most prolific teams in the league this season, but Farina warned Wellington would also pose a test to the Brisbane backline, despite the loss of striker Shane Smeltz.

Smeltz is one of just two goalscorers for the Phoenix at Suncorp Stadium, where the Kiwis are yet to pick up a point, but Farina said imports Chris Greenacre and Paul Ifill were capable replacements.

“One player is never the team, although Shane scored a lot of goals for them,” the former Socceroos coach said.


“I watched the game last week against Perth and they scored a wonder strike at the end and got three points. They’re a dangerous team and I think they’ve recruited pretty well as well.”

At the other end of the pitch, Farina said he was considering giving Scottish craftsman Charlie Miller his first start of the season.

“I haven’t made a decision one way or another on that yet but he’s a good chance to start,” he said.

“Charlie’s not exactly what we call an impact player off the bench. At certain stages of games he can do that but we need to get him game time so whether he starts I’ll decide before Sunday.

“There’s no way, if he did start, that he’d last 90 (minutes) but we’ll get an hour or 45, we’ll see how it goes.”

Brisbane Roar’s match against Wellington Phoenix kicks off at 3pm, Sunday at Suncorp Stadium.

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