Midfield pair move on as Brisbane secure defensive duo

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Brisbane Roar have confirmed the signings of youngsters Kye Rowles and Connor O’Toole as John Aloisi begins to reshape his squad ahead of next season.

Rowles, 17, is  a Palm Beach Sharks junior who was apart of the Joeys side which went to last years u-17 World Cup and links up with Joe Caletti who was captain of that side.

O’Toole, 19, is a left back who arrives in Brisbane via the Seirtsu Football Academy in Japan and has previously spent time with Adelaide United’s youth side.

Both Rowles and O’Toole have spent the past months training with Brisbane’s A-League side, with O’Toole playing for the NPL side in the weekend’s loss to Brisbane City, while Rowles spent a brief spell on trial in Belgium with Club Brugge.

O’Toole looms as the successor to Shane Stefanutto and will compete for the left back spot with Corey Brown, while Rowles joins a central defensive group which currently includes Daniel Bowles and Luke DeVere.

Both Jade North and James Donachie, who started in the recent A-League finals series are both out of contract, with the football department making noises they’re confident of keeping both.

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Going in the other direction are midfield duo Javier Hervas and Steven Lustica, who were told that their contracts would not be renewed.

Lustica, 25, returned to Brisbane Roar in the January transfer window of the 2013-14 season after a brief spell with Adelaide United, and went on to become a valuable member of the matchday squad in the chase for the double.

All up over the course of his two spells with Brisbane, Lustica made 70 appearances for the club, but perhaps tellingly, half of those came as a substitute.

This season saw Lustica’s chances limited further, with just six starts for the season (22 appearances in total). Lustica departs Brisbane after 70 appearances -20th in Brisbane Roar history- and 8 goals to his name, and having played an important part in the clubs 2013-14 double winning season.

Hervas, 26, was a late arrival this season following the naturalisation of Henrique, and the midfielder spent the first half of the season trying to build up his match sharpness.

Perhaps his best moment in his brief Brisbane career came on his debut in round 6 when he assisted the winner for Henrique with his first touch, just seconds after coming on as a sub.

All up Hervas made 17 appearances for Brisbane Roar, with just the two starts which came in rounds 15 and 16.  Best of luck to both Javi and Steven for the future, and welcome to both Kye and Connor.

Steven Lustica
Player Number- 91
Debut- Round 18, 2012-13 (Perth Glory-A)
Games- 35 (35)
Goals- 8
Honours- 2013-14 Premiership ,2013-14 Championship

Javier Hervas
Player Number- 115
Debut- Round 6, 2015-16 (Perth Glory- H)
Games- 2 (15)

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