He's won a World Cup with Brazil, a Champions League trophy with AC Milan, and now Roque Junior has set his sights on the A-League...Former Brazil captain Roque Junior is “keen” to come to the A-League and bring along with him a fellow countryman of his choosing.
Speaking exclusively to Goal.com, one of Junior’s representatives – John Denison of Entourage Football Services – revealed that the player has been offered to Australian clubs.
The 32-year-old former AC Milan and Leeds United defender is apparently even more interested in a move to Australia than former Brazil team-mate Denilson, who Goal.com revealed yesterday was potentially set for showdown talks of his own with an A-League club.
“He’s more keen than Denilson to come to Australia,” Denison told Goal.com. “He’s still a great central defender, he came to us and told us he wants to come to Australia.
“He wants to bring a player with him; he sees Australia as a great secondary territory where he can develop players.”
Despite the fact that Roque Junior hasn’t played competitive football since November, his pedigree is unquestioned.
A former Brazil captain, the centre-back was part of Luiz Felipe Scolari’s 2002 World Cup-winning squad and has lifted the UEFA Champions League trophy with Milan.
Only last season he was playing with Palmeiras, and Denison claims Junior would be a perfect fit for A-League clubs such as Sydney FC.
The Sky Blues passed up the opportunity to immediately offer a contract to Denilson – who could be an A-League player by the end of next week – but will be in the market for a centre-back before the season starts, with veteran Tony Popovic having announced his retirement last year.
Denison continued, “He [Junior] looks fit and trim and if you go to Youtube there’s an interview of him from last week and he looks fantastic.
“Sydney FC should have a Roque Junior now that Popovic has gone, because he’s not going to cost as much as Popovic and you’re going to end up with an ex-Brazil captain sitting at the back of your defence.
“He’ll bring in an audience.
“But the clubs ask themselves 'Can we get someone for less?' and that’s not the way they should be thinking.”
Denison claims that Junior has already been offered to two A-League clubs, as his representatives attempt to build interest in the defender.
“What we’ve done with Roque is we’ve been very discreet,” he added. “We’ve only put him out to one or two clubs and got some feedback.
“We’ll try and build a case and attract the interest of clubs who need a player like this.”
Chris Paraskevas, Goal.com