Brisbane Roar Head Coach Warren Moon has congratulated the club’s Academy on a fantastic 2021 season ahead of this weekend’s NPL Men’s Grand Finals.
The Roar’s high-achieving Under 23 and Under 18 teams will vie for silverware when they meet Moreton Bay United and Lions FC respectively at Perry Park this Saturday.
Chris Grossmann’s Young Roar side, meanwhile, came within 90 minutes of a first Grand Final appearance after setting multiple team records with 55 points and a second-place finish, four spots higher than in any other previous season.
“On behalf of the entire club, I want to congratulate everyone involved with the Academy on a terrific campaign,” Moon said.
“Chris and the Young Roar players and staff really set the standard this season with their ambition to compete at the top end of the table.
“To win 17 matches, finish second in the league and play the kind football they did as a group of 17, 18, 19 year olds is a wonderful achievement.
“To deliver such a consistent level of high performance while playing each match on the road is especially impressive. This was a conscious decision made by our club as we look ahead with a lot of excitement to the development of our $18million, state-of-the-art Academy base and Women’s Centre of Excellence at the South Pine Sports Complex.
“While the opportunity was there for us this season to have all home games at a single ground, we felt we could better support local clubs in recovering from COVID-19 by taking more games to community grounds and giving them more opportunities to generate revenue.
“The players embraced the challenge and it’s because of that attitude that we feel as comfortable as we do with bringing them into our first-team environment.
“We’re pleased that’s been recognised with the selection of Louis Zabala, Keegan Jelacic and Eli Adams in the NPL All Stars squad and Chris as an Assistant Coach, which we were happy to approve as a reward for them.
“For me as the Head Coach and someone who believes a lot in Queensland football, it’s been a real pleasure seeing these standards filter down through the age groups in our Academy.
“I’m very proud of the work that’s happening and know that we’ll be seeing more and more players coming through our pathway and into the first team, like the youth development group who will be with us throughout the A-League Men’s season.
“Well done all and good luck to our Under 23 and Under 18 teams this weekend!”