Henrique injury blow for Roar ahead of South Korea ACL clash

THE Brisbane Roar will be forced to play its final three Asian Champions League group matches without a visa player replacement for injured leading scorer Henrique.

The men in orange will take on Suwon Samsung FC in South Korea tonight.

Striker Jean Carlos Solorzano - the club's second top scorer (six goals) - looms as the obvious cover for Henrique (eight goals), who had a full knee reconstruction last week.

But the Costa Rican will have to bide his time before getting a taste of Asian Champions League action.

Under Asian Football Confederation rules, the Roar can only apply for an injury replacement for Henrique (pictured), if it advances from the current group stage of the Champions League to the knockout round of 16, in May.

Henrique has played in all three of the Roar's Champions League games so far this campaign as one of the club's three permitted visa players.

The others are German Thomas Broich and Serbian Andrija Kaluderovic.

The two sides, which drew 3-3 at Robina Stadium on March 18, are locked in second place in Group G on four points.

They are behind undefeated leader Beijing Guoan (nine points).

After Suwon, the Roar then plays Beijing away (April 21) before hosting Japan's Urawa Red Diamonds (May 5) in the final group-stage match.

Roar coach Frans Thijssen admitted tonight's game could be pivotal to his side finishing in the top two, and advancing to the round of 16 playoffs.

International marquee Broich, who played 45 minutes against Central Coast in his return from an ankle injury, will also travel to South Korea, and could play up front instead of the midfield. Goalkeeper Michael Theo, who has been sidelined for a month with a quad tear, is fit again and comes back into the travelling squad.

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