Brisbane Roar captain Matt McKay believes the individual brilliance of star recruit Brett Holman can propel the team one step further than last year's agonising semifinal loss in the A-League.
Holman will make his highly anticipated debut in Brisbane colours on Friday when they host league heavyweights Melbourne Victory at Suncorp Stadium.
The former Socceroo made his Roar debut in a 45-minute stint during a trial two weeks ago, but it was enough for McKay to realise the impact Holman would make this season.
"He's been around players in great leagues -- the Premier League and, obviously, the top division in Holland. He knows his stuff," said McKay.
"His all-action will suit our style of play. More importantly, he's a good guy. He's really fitted into the change room and helps us senior guys, and younger guys to become better players."
McKay wasn't afraid to pinpoint the former Aston Villa player as the difference between a heartbreaking semifinal finish last year, and a grand final berth this summer.
Holman, who last appeared domestically with the defunct Parramatta Power in 2002, will form a dream forward tandem with Jamie Maclaren.
"That little piece of individual brilliance will help teams and get you points during the season," McKay added.
"We did finish so close to winning both trophies. This year, we want to be up there again and perform when it counts."
Holman isn't the only big-name addition to the Roar over the winter, with expectations also high on former Danish international Thomas Kristensen.
McKay said the 33-year-old would add some sorely needed height to their midfield.
"He's got a bit of size about him, which we'll need this season. But he's also very mobile. He's got good passing range and will fit into our system really well," he said.
"We've got some great competition in the midfield and bringing him in will help our game."
A win over Victory would kick start a relatively easy opening three weeks with matches against lowly Newcastle Jets and Central Coast Mariners in the next fortnight.
"Obviously, to have a home game against the Victory is a marquee fixture for us," McKay said.