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Heart's coach and new star player train at AAMI Park

Aloisi expects Engelaar to run the show for Heart

Heart's coach and new star player train at AAMI Park


Bringing with him an impressive pedigree from the Eredivisie, the Bundesliga and international football, the new man in red and white is being backed to shine next season

John Aloisi has backed new marquee signing Orlando Engelaar to control games for Melbourne Heart in the 2013-14 A-League season.

Dutch midfielder Engelaar, a 14-cap Netherlands international and former PSV Eindhoven, FC Twente and Schalke player, was officially unveiled by the club on Tuesday.

Heart coach Aloisi said the midfielder stood out from the other players the club targeted in their scouting missions, and expects him to dictate terms to opponents in the campaign ahead.

"We've been looking for this type of player for a long time," he said.

"We've lacked someone that can control the tempo of a game. Like Orlando said, about how quick the A-League is, that's not always a positive.  Sometimes you need to be able to dictate the tempo.

"When you can break, you break, and when you have to keep hold of the ball and keep possession you can. And that's why we wanted someone like Orlando.

"We know his qualities. Even though he's a big boy, he's very good on the ball. His touch is good and he knows the right decisions to make - when to play a through ball and when to keep it.

"In the off-season we went overseas and watched quite a few players and of course [the chance to sign] Orlando came about. We watched him and we thought he was the player we really wanted and needed. And that's why we went after him."

Engelaar confirmed that his brief will be to play his natural game when he pulls on a red and white shirt; shielding the back four and triggering attacks with his incisive passing.

"I don't think John will ask me to score 20 goals or do things I'm less able to do," he said.

"He will want me to do what I'm good at, what I've shown before."

When asked if he feels under pressure to perform, having been described by Aloisi as potentially one of the best midfielders to have played in Australia, Engelaar said: "I see it as a compliment and I want to make him not look bad."

After finishing second bottom last season, Aloisi is confident the club's new recruits mean they will be looking to the top half of the table in 2013-14.

"Every single side in the A-League thinks they've got a good chance of making the finals and winning it. We're no different," he said.

"The players have been working hard toward making sure we're ready for a good season. Our objectives will stay in house. The players know what we expect of them and every single one of them is working hard to make sure we achieve that."

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