Brisbane Roar has added a late inclusion to their Hyundai A-League squad for the upcoming season, signing the club’s two-time National Youth League Player of the Year James Donachie to a three-year senior contract.
Donachie, a strong and dependable central defender, was one of the most consistent performers in the National Youth League last season, a feat backed up by his impressive Hyundai A-League debut in the final round of the 2011/12 season against Gold Coast United.
He played his junior football at Sunnybank Saints and his formative years at Rochedale Rovers before joining the Roar set-up.
The 19-year-old saying it was footballing progress in that time which helped him make such a crucial decision for his future.
“The development in my game since I arrived at the Roar has been huge and that speaks a lot to what we’re doing here at the club,” Donachie said.
“Rado has coached me since I was a junior and I really enjoy the way he coaches so I wanted to stay under that system.
“After I played the Gold Coast game, I just wanted to keep playing with the senior boys so I can’t wait to have that opportunity again.”
Donachie also mentioned learning from the vast experience within the playing squad – especially in the defensive ranks - was also hard to say no to.
“Choosing to stay here was an easy choice, especially with the experience of Matt [Smith], Stef [Shane Stefanutto] and Jurms [Matt Jurman] will definitely help me out in the long run,” he said.
“I’m always talking with Smithy about where I’m at and how I can improve my game.
“I’ve also been talking a lot to Jurms about his experience going away with national teams and how that can have an effect on what you’re doing at your club - they both help me out when they can.”
And as the 21st player on the official Brisbane Roar roster for the Hyundai A-League 2012/13, Donachie has few options when it comes to choosing a squad number with only 9, 12 and 15 left to pick from.
He’ll think hard before a final decision but if his explanation is anything to go by, he’s aiming high for his future at the club.
“Having a look at the numbers available and nine is probably out of the question!” Donachie said.
“I was thinking more along the lines of 15, I think it has a nice feel to it.
“The last person to wear 15 was Matt McKay, another Queensland born and bred player who went on to captain the club and play for the Socceroos.”
Donachie’s three-year deal will see him with the Hyundai A-League Champions until the end of the 2014/15 season.