DeVere next on path to K-League

January 19, 2011
By Jim Morton

Brisbane Roar and Olyroos defender Luke DeVere is set to become the latest A-League centre-back to sign a lucrative South Korean contract.

DeVere is expected to announce his departure for K-League club Gyeongnam FC within days, which will deliver a painful blow to the Roar's premiership hopes.

The 21-year-old former Young Socceroos captain has been instrumental in Brisbane's amazing success this season but it has also prompted a big three-year offer from Gyeongnam.

Big, strong A-League central defenders are the flavour of the month in Korea following the success of Socceroos hardman Sasa Ognenovski who led Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma to last year's Asian Champions League title.

Fellow K-League club Busan I'Park on Thursday signed Gold Coast United defender Bas van den Brink, who will join forces with Adelaide United's Iain Fyfe.

Like Fyfe, a torn DeVere, who travelled to Korea last weekend, is under pressure to join his new club by the end of the month.

The Roar would like to keep the rising star until the end of the A-League season but don't have a history of standing in the way of big transfer deals.

The club successfully enjoyed an important financial boost through the transfer of Tommy Oar, Adam Sarota and Michael Zullo to Dutch club FC Utrecht last year.

DeVere may not even have the chance to ensure Brisbane parcel up the premiers plate before he has to leave, as Central Coast have cut the Roar's lead to seven points, and have a game in hand.

Meantime, the Queensland Sports and Athletics Centre is emerging as a likely venue for Brisbane's final home game against Gold Coast on February 12 if Suncorp Stadium does not recover from flood damage in time.

The Roar have rescheduled two home matches to Skilled Park on the Gold Coast but the Robina ground, seen as a logical alternative by the FFA, is booked by the NRL for their All Stars match that night.