Brisbane Roar captain Tom Aldred is ready to close the book on the “worst period” of his career and help the A-League Men club off the foot of the competition ladder.
Aldred is set to make his first appearance of the season when the Roar face Melbourne Victory at AAMI Park on Monday.
A pre-season knee injury and subsequent setbacks have kept the Englishman sidelined for the entire campaign so far.
That comes after an injury-marred finish to last season, in which Aldred was in and out of the team due to a hamstring issue.
“This process I’ve been for through for probably the last like six-seven months has been the worst period in my career,” the 31-year-old said.
“I’ve never had a significant injury like this where I’ve been out for a prolonged period of time and I can say it has been frustrating, but for me now I want to look forward.
“Physically wise, I think my body’s ready and I think my body’s good enough to cope.”
Aldred’s return is huge boost for Warren Moon’s team after back-to-back defeats to Wellington and Perth left them in last place with just 11 points from 12 matches.
The trip to face Tony Popovic’s Victory comes after Brisbane’s home match originally scheduled for last Friday against the same opposition was called off due to south-east Queensland’s severe weather.
The Roar were thumped 3-0 by Victory at AAMI Park earlier this season but Aldred still believed the season can turn quickly.
“With just over half the games remaining, we’re in a position that we don’t want to be in,” he said.
“Let’s have it right. We don’t want to be sitting where we are right now but there’s not a lot in the league.
“I feel like we’ve got a squad there that can put results together and if you do that you can find yourself in a completely different position in two, three, four games.
“That’s what we want to do.
“We want to start getting some consistency, solid base to build on and points and consistent results both home and away.
“Obviously, our away game on Monday night is probably not a bad place to do it.”