SWANSEA, WALES - JANUARY 14: Ki Sung-Yueng of Swansea in action during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Arsenal at Liberty Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Swansea, Wales. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
SWANSEA, WALES - JANUARY 14: Ki Sung-Yueng of Swansea in action during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Arsenal at Liberty Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Swansea, Wales. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Korean star too rich for Roar

ROAR coach Robbie Fowler says it's unrealistic for the club to attempt to bring South Korean star Ki Sung-yueng back to Brisbane.

Ki is a free agent after parting ways with English Premier League club Newcastle United last month.

The 31-year-old midfielder had been expected to return to South Korea but reports out of Asia on Tuesday suggested that his hopes of playing in the K-League had been dashed by FC Seoul.

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Ki, who retired from international football last year after 110 appearances for his country, has also been linked with moves to the Chinese Super League and America's MLS.

 

But with the former Celtic and Swansea City star having gone to school in Brisbane, where he attended John Paul College from 2001 to 2005, there are those who believe the Roar should at the very least make contact with Ki to gauge his interest in playing for the Queensland A-League club.

However, Liverpool legend Fowler said the Roar would not be able to cater for the demands of Ki, who was on reportedly on a weekly wage of almost $A77,000 at Newcastle.

"I'm a realist," Fowler said.

"We can't afford him and I don't think anybody in the A-League could.

"I know he went to school here but we have to be realistic."

Former John Paul College student Ki Sung-yueng visits his former school in 2015. Picture: Supplied.
Former John Paul College student Ki Sung-yueng visits his former school in 2015. Picture: Supplied.

For the Roar to make an offer to Ki, the club's owners, Indonesia-based conglomerate the Bakrie Group, would also have to rethink their "no marquee players" policy.

Roar vice-chairman Chris Fong, who is also the advisor to the Bakrie Group, last month told The Courier-Mail: "We don't have a marquee player but that was also the way Robbie looked at it. We're not necessarily agreeing with that philosophy of a club built around one player."

Fowler said the Roar were set to start talks with Jacob Pepper in the hope of extending his contract beyond this season.

"He's done a good job for us and is good having around the dressing-room," Fowler said of the 27-year-old midfielder.

"We'll have a talk with him and see what he thinking about for next season."

The sixth-placed Roar visit Ballarat on Sunday to meet Western United, who are a point adrift of Brisbane.

"They're all big games. It doesn't matter if it's sixth against seventh, or fourth against fifth," Fowler said.

The Roar have lost just once in the past seven matches in an impressive stretch of form that has included four wins.



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