New Roar coach preparing team for match against Liverpool
THE Roar may have beaten Spanish club Villareal 3-0 in Brisbane last month, but new coach John Aloisi is expecting a vastly different challenge against English Premier League giants Liverpool tomorrow night.
Like Villareal, EPL clubs Chelsea and Tottenham were at the end of long campaigns when they both beat Sydney FC 1-0 in exhibition games in the harbour city in late May and early June.
Liverpool's visit, however, comes in a pre-season environment where players are fighting for starting spots.
That was evident in the first game of their tour, a dominant 4-0 victory against a Thai All Stars line-up in Bangkok at the weekend. The match may have been played in a monsoon, but Lazar Markovic, Mamadou Sakho, Adam Lallana and Divock Origi all found the back of the net.
"I think Liverpool will be different to what Chelsea and Tottenham were like at the end of the season, and we saw that with Villarreal - it was an end of season game," Aloisi said.
"It was a long season and they just wanted the season to hurry up and finish, whereas now they (Liverpool) are starting a new season and will want to prove to everyone they're good enough to play.
"They're definitely not here for a holiday. In pre-season when you're at a big club like Liverpool you're judged and scrutinised on every performance, and especially in the pre-season."
While Aloisi is preparing his charges for one of the biggest games in the Roar's history, the club is still facing uncertainty off he field with players not being paid on time in recent weeks.
The new coach said he had tried to ensure the players were solely focussed on playing good football.
"I can't enlighten you on whether there's going to be a takeover or a big cash injection, but I've been told everyone's going to get paid," he said.
"I've said to the players, those things will get sorted out because Brisbane Roar will be around no matter what."
Meanwhile, Aloisi said he had been impressed with his assistant coaches Josh McCloughan and Karl Dodd - both former Roar players - adding another senior assistant was on the way after Rado Vidosic left to join Melbourne Victory.
"The new assistants have been brilliant - Josh has been coaching the QAS (Queensland Academy of Sport) team and has so much knowledge. His work ethic is unbelievable," Aloisi said.
"And the same with (new Roar high performance manager) Karl Dodd.
"A successful team needs a good group, and I think we've got good people involved with this football club."