Brisbane's captain during their A-League glory days Matt Smith is hopeful Robbie Fowler's appointment as Roar coach will herald a change in fortunes for the A-League club.
Smith and Fowler played together at the North Queensland Fury before the ex-Socceroo won three grand finals at the Roar including two as the club's captain.
Now playing for Kitchee in Hong Kong's Premier League, the 36-year-old says watching his old team struggle in the 2018-19 A-League campaign had been tough to take.
The Roar were thumped 6-1 by Newcastle at home last weekend and head into Thursday's season-ending clash with Adelaide United second-last on the ladder with just four wins.
Liverpool great Fowler was named as coach on Tuesday, ending a four-month search following the resignation of John Aloisi in late December.
It's Fowler's first full-time coaching role since retiring in 2012 but Smith says he is optimistic the Roar have plumped for the right man.
"Robbie is very familiar with the A-League from his time with the Fury and the Glory ... although he's new to management, he knows the league structure, the operations, the type of players, the regulations around all of the policies and things," Smith told AAP.
"For any player that's going to get a phone call from Robbie to come and play for him - and Brisbane's a great club - I'm sure any of his potential signings for the future will of course be interested."
Smith's first professional contract was with the Fury as an injury replacement midway through the 2009-10 season.
He played 11 games with the Townsville club alongside the ex-England international.
"Robbie was certainly one of the leaders within the team that made sure I was settling in well, that I understood the gameplan and the approach from the coach," Smith said.
"His career speaks for itself. During his era I couldn't name too many other better English forwards.
"With that he's obviously going to command a lot of respect, a lot of admiration from the players at Brisbane Roar. I'm sure the players will be keen to learn from him, keen to listen and keen to see what his style and philosophy of football is."
Fowler will meet the club's players and support staff at training south of Brisbane on Wednesday and is expected to be in the stands on Thursday to watch the Anzac Day clash with Adelaide.
Australian Associated Press