Transfer window a lifeline for ALM clubs

A-League Men clubs will be able to bolster their squads over the next month when the competition's transfer window opens later this week.

In a tightly contested season - where just nine points separate second-placed Central Coast Mariners and Perth Glory in last spot - many clubs are expected to strengthen before the window closes on February 8.

Brisbane Roar have been one of the season's over-achievers and their positive start is made all the more impressive considering marquee English striker Charlie Austin returned home for personal reasons.

Experienced Australian international Robbie Kruse was training with the club last month and the Roar are not alone in wanting to improve their options in the final third.

Perth Glory have agreed a deal to sign another Socceroos striker in Adam Taggart, while Western Sydney have flagged a need for attacking reinforcements with Sulejman Krpic struggling to find the target.

Melbourne Victory, whose own marquee recruit Nani has been ruled out for the season with an ACL injury, have also had their problems in front of goal.

But the impending threat of Football Australia sanctions may diminish their desire to spend money when their campaign looks set to be heavily impacted.

Victory, like Adelaide United and Macarthur FC, have free visa spots with Bulls boss Dwight Yorke keen to add to his squad.

Yorke said this month that his side was "down to the bare bones" with forward Lachlan Rose and midfielder Daniel De Silva headlining their injury list.

"We are constantly trying to improve the team and we're not in the market for any (old) player," said Yorke.

"The game is a physical game but you have to have a little bit of everything to be competing with the best teams.

"If you can find that balance then you're making progress and that's what we intend to do."

For league leaders Melbourne City, who boast an in-form Marco Tilio, and the second-placed Mariners, who sold Garang Kuol to Newcastle United, it will be a case of hanging on to what they already have.

Wellington Phoenix manager Ufuk Talay hinted his side would promote from within after the transfer of Ben Waine to English side Plymouth Argyle, while Newcastle boss Arthur Papas said it was unlikely he could improve his squad due to the club's ownership status.