It was great to see Brisbane Roar lift the Premiers’ Plate after being, by far, the most consistent team this season.
Among the Roar players to have really performed throughout their club’s run have been Thomas Broich and Luke Brattan.
We know plenty about the German play-maker, who has recaptured some of his best form this season, but it is the other 'b’ in midfield who is coming into his own as a play-maker and increasingly, a match winner.
Perhaps inevitably, Brattan’s name is a recurring one in discussions about who should be getting a chance to play for Australia at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
After Roar’s silverware-sealing 1-0 win over Melbourne Victory last weekend, a number of people made a direct comparison between Brattan and his Victory opposite, Mark Milligan.
I believe it is unfair to compare two players, who in an ideal world could happily co-exist in the national team.
For starters, Milligan has established himself as a regular for the Socceroos over the past year and has had some fine performances in the green and gold colours.
Given our issue in defence I would be quite happy to see 'Millsy’ play as a central defender, a position he is well familiar with. Being so comfortable on the ball he can help playing out from the back, especially as we can expect to be under considerable pressure in Brazil.
Millsy is just as comfortable in midfield, which is where he plays for club and country at the moment.
Brattan has also shown his class as a defensive midfielder. His strength is his precision passing game, with a good range to boot. He is able to play perfect passes in any situation, something that is not always easy to do.
So impressed was Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou by Brattan when both of them were at Roar, he reportedly described him as the best natural passer he had seen at the club. Not a bad rap with the likes of Broich, Matt McKay and Erik Partaalu treading the boards there.
Brattan controls the midfield with a controlled short passing game and he is able to play the long straight passes over a considerable distance along the ground. I really like this attribute of his game – it’s a technique not easy to master and one that few players do well.
His vision and understanding are also good characteristics which enable him to seize the right moments to play the killer ball.
Brattan is exactly the type of player we are looking for in that position for the Socceroos. He is progressing nicely and still has plenty of improvement ahead of him.
Alas he hasn’t already been involved already in some capacity with the Socceroos. I would have liked to see how he coped with the jump to international football. Unfortunately he wasn't given that opportunity by Holger Osieck and time is not on his side in the race for Brazil.
We've been talking about the need to transition for a long time now. Many argue that Holger missed that chance to start integrating the next generation, leaving us a couple years behind. With Ange on board we’ve already seen and hopefully we will continue to see the likes of Brattan in future camps and squads as we build for the future.