Macarthur young gun Lachlan Rose has been lauded by Bulls coach Ante Milicic for seizing his chance at the start of the A-League Men season.
With star recruit Tomi Juric being eased into the campaign, Rose has been thrust into the main striker’s position for the Bulls’ first two matches.
The 22-year-old hasn’t let Milicic down, scoring in both games including last weekend’s winner in a 1-0 victory over Sydney FC.
Rose is likely to lead the line again with fringe Socceroo Juric still not ready to start when the Bulls welcome Central Coast to their temporary home of Penrith’s Bluebet Stadium on Sunday.
“He’s scoring goals and that’s ultimately what you want from a number nine,” Milicic told AAP.
“He does a lot of work that definitely doesn’t go unnoticed to the staff and the playing group off the ball.
“His attitude’s fantastic. He wants to learn, he wants to get better and I think the main thing for Lachie, which is pleasing to see, is that he wants to make a proper career out of the game and he’s working ever so hard.
“I’m really pleased for the boy to see how quickly he’s improved considering where he’s come from, but he knows that he’s got a lot more to give and looking forward to being part of that journey for him.”
Rose’s form will allow Juric to again make a cameo off the bench after his introduction as a second-half substitute against Sydney.
Ex-Premier League player Adrian Mariappa is yet to arrive in Australia following his recent signing while Jordon Mutch is still recovering from a hamstring injury picked up in the opening round draw against Wellington.
Central Coast are set to give goalkeeper Yaren Sozer an A-League Men debut with Mark Birighitti to serve a one-match ban after his sending-off in the midweek FFA Cup win over Wollongong Wolves but coach Nick Montgomery says he has otherwise a full squad available for the game.