Roar add two more young Queenslanders to Liberty A-League squad

Dennis and Shuttleworth

Brisbane Roar has added another two young Queenslanders to its strong crop of homegrown talents with the signing of defender Heidi Dennis and goalkeeper Isabella Shuttleworth.

The teenagers have been upgraded to their first professional contracts and are now available for selection for the rest of the Liberty A-League season.

Both players came through the QAS and have already played at senior level in the NPL Women’s competition.

Dennis, 16, has also signed a development deal to play Rugby Sevens for the Queensland Reds, but her immediate focus is on continuing her impressive progress with the Roar.

“It’s super exciting,” she said. “It’s a big deal. I’ve been working towards this for a long time and I’m keen for the rest of the season.

Heidi Dennis in training (image: Kyoko Kurihara)

“I’m getting used to training. The start was a big step up from the QAS, a lot higher intensity, but I’m settling in well.

“I’m hoping to do well and get some game time.”

Shuttleworth, 18, played for the Roar in pre-season after winning the double with Lions FC in the NPL.

She was also in goal during the Queensland State Team’s penalty shootout victory over New South Wales in last year’s Watson-O’Connor Cup clash.

“I’m so happy to sign my first professional contract with the Roar,” Shuttleworth said.

“I’m a Queenslander so it’s really exciting to be at home and training with all these amazing women.

“I trained a bit with the team last year and that was exciting but now coming into my ‘second season’, I’m getting into the rhythm and finding it more comfortable.

Bella Shuttleworth in training (image: Kyoko Kurihara)

“And I really like training under [Goalkeeper Coach] Brody [Sams] and with our other goalkeepers.

“I’d love to play for the Matildas eventually, that’s my ultimate goal, but I know I’ll have to go step by step to get there.”

Shuttleworth and Dennis will be hoping for a win when the Roar take on Liberty A-League leaders Melbourne Victory at Moreton Daily Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The match kicks off at 4:05pm, with gates opening at 3:20pm.