Brisbane Roar coach Warren Moon has made it crystal clear young defender Izaack Powell remains part of the A-League Men club's future.
The Australian Under-17 representative recently revealed he's been battling leukaemia since June, putting his football career on hold.
Ahead of Sunday's FFA Cup round-of-16 clash with Lions FC, Moon said the 19-year-old fullback's spot in the Roar squad will be waiting for him once he's in a position to return to training.
"We've all rallied around Izaack and we're constantly in touch with him to make sure he's okay and he's got the support he needs," Moon said.
"We know it's difficult for him and his family at this time but he's really positive about where he's at right now.
"As I've said to him all along when he gets better - and he will - when he gets better, we expect to see him back here at Brisbane Roar and back doing what he loves doing, playing football."
Powell debuted as a 16-year-old in 2019, becoming the youngest player to appear for the Roar at that time.
He has gone on to make 10 senior appearances for the Roar and was part of Australia's squad for the under-17 World Cup in Brazil, starting in all four of the Joeys' matches.
The Roar will welcome back key midfield playmaker Jay O'Shea for their cup clash with the Lions after the 33-year-old was a notable absentee from the line-up which beat Peninsula Power 3-0 in the round of 32 in September.
O'Shea returned to the United Kingdom during the off-season and had difficulty returning on time, meaning he was underprepared for the Power match but Moon said the Irishman will feature on Sunday.
"Jay will be involved somewhere, how long for we're not sure yet but he's definitely available for selection," Moon said.
After Sunday's clash the Roar are set to continue their build up for the 2021-22 A-League Men season with a friendly against Adelaide United next weekend, with a venue and date to be announced on Monday or Tuesday.
Australian Associated Press