Melbourne Heart FC Head Coach John Aloisi said he was pleased with Harry Kewell's return from injury on Saturday and is hoping his captain can feature in the team’s starting line-up soon
Melbourne Heart FC Head Coach John Aloisi said he was pleased with Harry Kewell's return from injury on Saturday and is hoping his captain can feature in the team-s starting line-up soon.
Speaking after the Red and White's 1-1 draw with the Western Sydney Wanderers, Aloisi said that Kewell-s presence had given his teammates the confidence to back themselves on the pitch.
“We know what Harry can do, he just lifts everyone around him, just him walking out onto that pitch, his teammates lift and that is the reason why we have him at our Club,” Aloisi said.
“It just showed in that short glimpse with Harry coming on for 15-20 minutes, the game just turned for a good 10 minutes when he started keeping the ball.
“All the other players around him seemed to lift with confidence on the ball as well and we started to combine and play some good combination football and Harry brings that to a team and we still have some other players to come back in that will help us there too.”
Aloisi also took the opportunity to praise Kewell's attitude while he was sidelined.
“Harry has worked so hard to get even onto the pitch, he-s only trained with the team once and that was yesterday, but he was desperate to play, that just goes to show the person he is,” Aloisi said.
“A lot of people question his attitude and his desire to play football; last week he couldn-t quite make it, this week he did some individual training and yesterday we tested him and he said I want to play.”
Aloisi is hopeful that the 35-year-old can return to Heart-s starting line-up soon, but suggested that he wouldn't rush the Heart's number 10 into the starting eleven against Sydney FC in Round 10 this Sunday.
“Whether we can play him longer than 20 minutes next week, hopefully he can,” Aloisi said.
“Whether he starts I still have question marks because he still needs to work on his fitness and we don-t want him to break down, we want him back for the whole season now.”