Vrbesic looks for fresh start

This time last year Stefan Vrbesic was trying to forge a career in Europe, now the midfielder is looking for a fresh start after returning to play for Brisbane Roar in the National Youth League.

This time last year Stefan Vrbesic was trying to forge a career in Europe, now the midfielder is looking for a fresh start after returning to play for Brisbane Roar in the National Youth League.

The creative midfielder helped his team to a 2-2 draw against Adelaide at Hindmarsh Stadium last Friday but will miss the chance to play the Central Coast Mariners at Ballymore picking up a groin injury yesterday.

It-s all a long way from the Estadio de Gran Canaria, the home of Spanish second division side Las Palmas, where Vrbesic was hoping to make a name for himself.

After signing a contract with the Canary Islands-based club last year, the 20-year-old played in pre-season friendlies but never got on the pitch in a competitive match.

Instead, Vrbesic went on loan to Croatia where things got messy and he decided to return home to Brisbane and start from scratch.

Despite the disappointment, the former Young Socceroos midfielder said there was plenty he could take from the experience.

“It-s like going to a different world,” he explains. “When I was in the Spanish second division it was unbelievable.

“All the players there can play and I was the youngest one so I was constantly learning something from those older boys.

“It-s good for me now, having been over there and had that experience I can definitely bring that back here.”

It-s experience that could help the youngster land a first-team contract, if he can perform to the potential he believes he has.

“It-s up to me now,” he says. “Now that the new gaffer-s in hopefully I can do well at training and play well.”

Ultimately, performances on the pitch for Roar Youth will speak the loudest, and as one of the most experienced players in the squad, Vrbesic is keen to stamp his authority on each game he plays.

“I try to help the younger boys as much as I can and I think I definitely play a big part in the team-s performance,” he says.

Vrbesic-s injury this week is a big blow for Roar Youth, who need a win against the Central Coast Mariners on Saturday if they are to hoist themselves up the table stay in touch with the top four.

However, the youngster believes the team has enough quality to turn their season around and sneak into the finals.

“We-ve had a bit of a slow start but as (Roar Youth coach) Rado (Vidosic) keeps saying I think the main thing is that we-re performing well,” he says.

“In some games we haven-t been performing to the best of our abilities and that-s why the results haven-t been coming but I-m pretty confident that as the season goes on the results will come, because we-ve got a good squad.”

Brisbane Roar Youth-s match against the Mariners kicks off at 3.15pm this Saturday at Ballymore and will be followed by the Westfield W-League match between Brisbane and Melbourne at 6pm.

Tickets for the double-header are available from the Clyde Road entrance to Ballymore Stadium, Herston and cost $5 for adults, $2 for concessions and children under 15 and free for Roar members.

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