O’Donovan has been named for Saturday's clash against Melbourne Victory as the second-placed Jets look to maintain their four-point lead from Melbourne City in third.

Thomas joked that he was hopeful the Irishman would not play and recalls when he first met him in his time at Coventry City.

“World football can be funny sometimes, when I was a bit younger Roy O’Donovan just signed for Coventry and I was on trial, staying at their hotel,” Thomas told FourFourTwo.

“He was going house hunting, on the opposite side of the world, I tagged along as a young frat boy inspecting houses with him and his wife and six-seven years later he signs for Newcastle and we’re playing against each other. It’s interesting how it works.

“It would be a bit awkward if he doesn’t remember, but I reckon he would.

“He can score a lot of goals and he’s a great inclusion for them.”

Thomas also praised Matt Acton for stepping up when needed after being sidelined for two games with a foot injury.

Acton played in the 3-0 triumph at Western Sydney Wanderers and 3-2 win over Perth Glory last month.

Thomas regained his position in last week’s 3-1 loss to Sydney FC and said he was not worrying about being first-choice goalkeeper.

“We’ve become good mates off the field, he’s a top bloke,” he said.

“I think most goalkeeping groups in most teams are quite close.

“You have specific training together, you’re with each other a lot and you understand the pressure that comes with goalkeeper.

“I’ve been in that situation before at the club and you learn to worry about yourself, that being said he did a brilliant job coming in, especially the Wanderers game.

“Competition is always healthy, but I don’t tend to worry about that stuff. I just come and give my best every day.

“Fair play to him, it doesn’t surprise me because when he first came in to where he is now, physically he’s in amazing shape, so it didn’t surprise me. You get the results.”