Debutant goalkeeper Matt Acton has the full backing of Brisbane coach Mike Mulvey ahead of the Roar’s A-League clash with Perth on Saturday.
Brisbane coach Mike Mulvey is confident rookie goalkeeper Matt Acton can handle the pressure of being thrust into the first A-League start of his senior career.
Acton will go between the posts for the league leader’s clash with Perth at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday after regular `keeper Michael Theo succumbed to a shoulder injury.
Mulvey confirmed Theo and defender Jade North (groin) will both miss the match against the Glory, giving 21-year-old Acton his debut for the Roar.
Townsville-born Acton will become the 100th player to represent the Roar, completing a long wait following his move to Brisbane in 2007.
A former Queensland Academy of Sport member, Acton was promoted to the Roar’s senior squad last year.
Mulvey has no worries about throwing the unheralded youngster straight in as Theo’s replacement.
“It’s very simple. He’s been training for this, he’s been selected for this and it’s his turn now,” Mulvey said.
“I’m sure he’ll step up to the plate.
“He’s one of 11 … Matty’s one of us. We’ve got faith in him. He’s going to come in and do a good job.”
North was withdrawn from the match after experiencing tightness in the groin he only recently injured.
“We played on a heavy pitch in Newcastle and we backed up in five days and he’s just tightening,” Mulvey said of the former Socceroos defender.
“If we push these guys and they get a slight strain, it will be a three or four week injury rather than just the one game injury.”
He will be replaced by James Donachie, who had been playing in North’s absence earlier in the campaign.
The Glory are also battling selection issues ahead of their trip to the venue where they controversially lost the 2012 grand final.
Scott Jamieson (achilles) and William Gallas (calf) are both out injured while captain Jacob Burns will be sidelined due to to suspension.
Despite their worries, Mulvey is still wary of the Glory in a match that has taken on extra significance for both clubs since that 2012 decider.
“I think they’ve got players to cover that, it will probably make them hungrier, the players that are coming in, as well,” he said.
“They’ve got capable players. They’ve got Steve Pantelidis who will come in. We’ve got great respect for Perth.”