Henrique on track for next match


Brisbane Roar’s livewire Brazilian striker Henrique is confident he will recover quickly from a knee injury and be fit for the club’s next Hyundai A-League game against Central Coast Mariners in Gosford on December 27.

Henrique had to be substituted in the 42nd minute in the Roar’s 1-0 win against Adelaide United on Friday night after he was injured in a crude challenge by Reds defender Dylan McGowan.

The tackle came just 10 minutes after Henrique had scored a wonder goal from the edge of the box and two minutes later set up teammate Dimitri Petratos for a chance that could have been the Roar’s second goal but hit the upright.

Henrique slightly twisted his knee and had his calf corked in the tackle and watched the remainder of the game from the sideline with his knee in ice.

Roar medical staff will monitor the injury over the next 48 hours and, at this stage, expect the striker to be back training by the end of the week.

Working in Henrique’s favour is the Roar doesn’t play this weekend because their scheduled Round 11 opponents, Western Sydney Wanderers, are in Morocco for the FIFA Club World Cup.

The goal was Henrique’s seventh of the season and put him just one goal behind current top marksman Nathan Burns of Wellington Phoenix, and one ahead of Melbourne Victory’s Besart Berisha and Perth Glory’s Andy Keogh.

The win in Adelaide, the first time the Reds had lost at home in a year, continued the good start by Roar’s interim coach, former Dutch international Frans Thijssen who now has two wins and a draw from his first four games in charge.

Thijssen praised his team’s stoic effort after losing Henrique in the first half.

“We missed Ricky (Henrique) a lot in the second half. He is so quick and gets behind defenders. But I am pleased with the effort of my boys to hold off Adelaide,’’ Thijssen said.

“They are fighting like hell – and that’s what I like. We still have a good team (despite injuries and transfers) but there is still a lot to improve.’’