Heat rising at Roar ahead of new season

Brisbane Roar forward Brandon Borrello says pre-season has been intense as the Queensland outfit prepare to ‘put on a show’ in Season 2016/17, starting on October 7 against Melbourne Victory at Suncorp.

“We’re a lot fitter, we’re stronger. The style that we play is coming along very well,” Borrello told reporters on Friday.

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“From the players perspective we have come a long way from last pre-season until now.

“Everyone is giving 100 per cent on the training pitch. 

“It gets heated sometimes because everyone wants to win, even in training and that’s just the mentality John [Aloisi] has installed in us.”

Aloisi’s squad have been building strongly in pre-season and will play a PS4 NPL QLD U23 Select today (Saturday) ahead of the season opener against Melbourne Victory at Suncorp Stadium on 7 October.

Having been knocked out of the Westfled FFA Cup in the Round of 32 by Perth Glory, Roar exercised some measure of revenge when they claimed a convincing 4-0 win over Perth in a friendly last Tuesday.

For Borrello it’s a good indication of the strides the squad have taken in pre-season, with the 21-year-old feeling the Roar are a much stronger outfit compared to the corresponding time last season.

The addition of former Socceroo Brett Holman means the Roar boast an abundance of attacking options heading into the new campaign, with Borrello set to compete with Tommy Oar and Dimitri Petratos for a starting spot in Roar’s frontline.

“He’s [Holman] is a very exciting player, great for the team and adds a lot to our attack. He’s definitely a player every team would want. 

“I’m the guy that makes the runs in behind and ends the attack but he’s a creator.

“He’s there getting the ball in the middle of the field and dictating play.

Brett Holman

“We need that sort of player in that position so it’s great to have him and we’re going to enjoy having him this season.”

Twenty one year-old Borrello was one of the form players in the first month of last season, netting four goals in his first four games and earning a NAB Young Player of the Year nomination.

 However he finished the season with just five to his name – something he is determined to remedy this term.

“As a young player you want to keep building and building and show some consistency,” said Borrello.

“For me I’ve got to work on that this season. I want to score more goals and create more chances and be more lethal.”

Brisbane Roar forwards Jamie Maclaren and Brandon Borrello are nominees for the NAB YFOTY award.

Touching on their 5-4 semi-final exit at the hands of the Wanderers last season Borrello said the squad had learned some harsh but valuable lessons from that Finals Series clash, one of the greatest matches in league history. 

“To go 3-0 up and lose a game is something that doesn’t happen often in football and for it to happen to this group of players that want to win everything it’s hard to take.

“But I can guarantee you it’s not going to happen again.

“We’re not bothered at all and we want the fans to know we’re here to play and we’re going to put on a show.”