John Aloisi says his decision to start Spanish recruit Alex Lopez ahead of club favourite Matt McKay was justified but it doesn't mean the former Brisbane captain should get comfortable on the bench.
The premiership skipper started the Roar's A-League campaign as a substitute in Sunday's 1-1 draw with Central Coast, coming on for Lopez in the 84th minute.
Lopez's resume includes seven years at La Liga club Celta Vigo and most recently a starring role with English Championship outfit Sheffield Wednesday.
The former Spanish youth international, now 30, showed his class as stormy conditions cleared in Brisbane, pulling the strings as the new-look Roar midfield clicked.
"I thought that it was a good opportunity for me to play Alex and he showed to me he was ready for it," Aloisi said.
Jack Hingert wore the captain's armband as the side failed to convert their dominance into a season-opening win.
"He was disappointed because he doesn't start but he was there like a leader that he is and I didn't see a difference in terms of his preparation," Aloisi said of McKay.
"He was brilliant ... he wants to start like every footballer but he understands I have to make decisions."
But the midfielder may play alongside or instead of Lopez this season, Aloisi said, as the coach takes a horses for course approach to the season.
"I've got a really strong squad and Matt will play his part," Aloisi said.
"He's a great player and there will be times we'll be starting with Matty.
"Considering the way we played I thought (starting Lopez) it was a (justified) decision."
The former Socceroos striker also praised goal-scoring recruit Adam Taggart despite his mixed Roar debut.
Taggart wasted two golden chances in the first half before slotting what he thought was an equaliser with his seventh shot on goal early in the second half.
A tight off-side ruling had that waved away on review, with Taggart officially opening his account soon after.
"He knows he should've have four or five goals but he didn't put his head down," Aloisi said.
"He kept going and I know, being a former striker, it's hard when you feel like its not your day.
"He'll be alright; he's a goal scorer."