Roar add fresh faces ahead of W-League opener

Nine new players have been added to the Brisbane Roar Westfield W-League squad as preparations ramp up for the 2015/16 season opener against last season's Grand Finalists Canberra United at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday, 18 October.

The 17-player squad (with several players still to be added) includes Matildas Clare Polkinghorne (on loan from Portland Thorns), Tameka Butt and Katrina Gorry, who were part of the Australian squad that reached the quarter-finals of the FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada in June.

Those players confirmed in the Roar squad are: 2. Brooke Goodrich, 3. Amy Chapman, 4. Clare Polkinghorne ( below ), 6. Angela Beard, 7. Gabe Marzano, 8. Ayesha Norrie, 9. Cortnee Vince, 10. Katrina Gorry, 12 Alisha Foote, 13. Tameka Butt, 14. Summer O'Brien, 15. Ruth Blackburn, 16. Ashley Spina, 17. Emily Geilnik, 18. Maili Forbes, 19. Sofie Persson, 20. Carrie Simpson (gk).

Clare Polkinghorne

The new players include Marzano (forward), O'Brien (defender) and Blackburn (defender), from The Gap; Simpson (goalkeeper), from Bradford City; Spina (midfielder), from Newcastle Jets; Persson (forward), from Sunshine Coast Fire; Vine (forward) from the NTC Under-17 program; and Foote (midfield, Redlands) and Forbes (midfield, The Gap), who have progressed from their former clubs through the Roar WNPL program.

The squad has lost two players to injury.

Fullback Brooke Spence has broken a bone in her foot (a recurrence of a 2009 injury) while midfielder Vedrana Popovic's injured Achilles tendon has not recovered in time for the season start.

Brisbane Roar W-League Head Coach Belinda Wilson said the rebuilt squad was a good balance between youth and experience.

"Foundation players like Clare and Tameka and senior players Katrina, Amy and Em will have an important role in providing leadership and experience to those new players stepping up to the W-League for the first time," Wilson said.

Stephanie Catley of Victory fights for the ball with Tameka Butt of the Roar.

"It is great to see players who have worked hard to advance through the NPL system who will now get the chance to test themselves at a higher level.

"There will always be challenges in bringing a new squad together and I have no doubts this group is up to those challenges.

"The important thing is we have been able to re-establish the culture that helped make us so successful in the past and that will hold us in good stead in the season ahead."