Susak steps up

Milan Susak has seamlessly taken the role in the centre of defence left vacant by Luke DeVere.

Most pundits predicted the departure of Luke DeVere from Brisbane Roar would leave Head Coach Ange Postecoglou with a massive hole to fill in the middle of his defence.

The youngster had developed into one of the premier central defenders in the Hyundai A-League before he left for South Korea at a crucial time in the season.

All throughout this time, Postecoglou maintained he had ample cover in the shape of Milan Susak, a player who had filled gaps across the backline during the season, and the 27-year-old hasn-t let him down.

The quietly spoken No.23 has slotted in seamlessly next to Matt Smith to rapidly form a strong partnership at the heart of the backline.

A natural central defender, Susak has had to bide his time in before getting an extended run in his preferred position and he-s making the most of his opportunity.

“It-s been awhile, it has taken me nine months to get back there since I left Germany,” Susak said.

“Matty and I have really enjoyed playing together and I think we-ve done really well.

“It-s like having a partner.

“You always need to know how he is on the ball, how he covers you, how you cover him.

“You-ve always got to look for that, it-s been four or five games now so those combinations are getting better.

“We-ve now got one game left to play together and we-ll see how it all pans out.”

Returning to Australia after three years plying his trade in Germany - and coming back to a club in the process of rebuilding - Susak was unsure what to expect of this season.

Through a series of injuries to his fellow defenders and his own good form, Susak has managed to start in 24 of the club-s 32 fixtures this season to be one of Brisbane-s most consistent contributors.

As a fierce competitor he was always focused on helping his side have a successful year, however the magnitude of this season-s achievements to date have been a pleasant surprise.

“I don-t think anyone could have imagined what we-ve been able to do so far this season,” he said.

“We all wanted to win, we all had our sights on that, but if someone would have told me we-d go 27 games undefeated I probably would have told them they were crazy.

“It has been an amazing run, an amazing year and I just don-t want it to end.

“I still think there is another gear in us and hopefully we can show that on March 13.”