Re­cruit­ment this year may not have un­earthed an­other Del Piero (at least not when we went to press…) but it has pro­duced a pretty strong first XI...

Australian Four Four Two - - FEATURES -

GK ALEX CISAK SYD­NEY FC Former Aus­tralia youth in­ter­na­tional goal­keeper re­turns to Oz af­ter more than a decade in England’s lower leagues. Poland-born Ho­bart-raised Cisak has a tough job re­plac­ing Danny Vukovic at Syd­ney FC. RB LUKE WILK­SHIRE SYD­NEY FC The vet­eran with 80 caps left Aus­tralia for Mid­dles­brough as a 16-year-old in 1998. Wilk­shire, who can play right­back or in mid­field, brings ex­pe­ri­ence as well as pass­ing and tack­ling qual­ity. CB ER­SAN GU­LUM ADE­LAIDE UNITED Turkey in­ter­na­tional re­turns to the coun­try of his birth to play in the A-League with Ade­laide United. Gu­lum will be a phys­i­cal and vo­cal leader in United’s de­fence, with vast ex­pe­ri­ence at Turk­ish gi­ants Be­sik­tas. CB BART SCHENKEVELD MEL­BOURNE CITY Ex-Feyeno­ord and Nether­lands youth in­ter­na­tional joins City in his prime at 26. The right-sided, 6ft tall cen­tral de­fender made 20 ap­pear­ances in the Ere­di­visie last term. LB SCOTT JAMIESON MEL­BOURNE CITY The tena­cious left­back has joined his fifth A-League club, sign­ing with Mel­bourne City af­ter a stint in Swe­den. Now 28, Jamieson won’t be short of en­ergy up and down the flank – along with plenty of Twit­ter ban­ter. RM ADRIAN MIERZEJEWSKI SYD­NEY FC Gun 40-time Poland in­ter­na­tional mid­fielder who has daz­zled in Syd­ney’s FFA Cup run. Spent the past three years in the Middle East af­ter pre­vi­ous stints in Turkey and his home­land. DM PERTH XAVI GLORY TOR­RES Box-to-box who has plied former his trade Barcelona in Spain’s mid­fielder top two be­fore di­vi­sions join­ing for friend al­most Diego a decade Cas­tro at Glory. this year, Ac­cused while of with match-fix­ing Real Betis. ear­lier CM MA­TIAS SANCHEZ MEL­BOURNE VIC­TORY Ex-Ar­gentina youth in­ter­na­tional, who won the 2007 Un­der-20 World Cup. The hard-work­ing 30-year-old mid­fielder spent most of his ca­reer in Ar­gentina, along with spells in Greece and USA. LM JO­HAN AB­SA­LON­SEN ADE­LAIDE UNITED Two-time Den­mark in­ter­na­tional has shown his qual­ity on the left flank in Ade­laide’s FFA Cup run. The 32-year-old is a cre­ator and use­ful over a dead ball. Pre­vi­ously spent his ca­reer in Den­mark. ST/AM RON­ALD VAR­GAS NEW­CAS­TLE JETS Diminu­tive Venezuela in­ter­na­tional striker who looks the real deal. Won the Bel­gian ti­tle twice pre­vi­ously with An­der­lecht and has also had cup suc­cess in Greece with AEK Athens. Brings ex­pe­ri­ence at 30 too. ST ORIOL RIERA WEST­ERN SYD­NEY WAN­DER­ERS Span­ish jour­ney­man who scored four goals in West­ern Syd­ney’s first three FFA Cup games. The striker, who stands 6 ft 1 in, has a good header and po­si­tional sense. Pre­vi­ous clubs in­clude De­portivo Coruna, Osasuna and Wi­gan.


01 WOUT BRAMA CEN­TRAL COAST MARINERS Dutch de­fen­sive mid­fielder heads to Gos­ford af­ter more than a decade play­ing in the Dutch Ere­di­visie, in­clud­ing 200-plus ap­pear­ances for Twente. 02 KARIM MATMOUR ADE­LAIDE UNITED Ex-Al­ge­ria in­ter­na­tional played three games at the 2010 World Cup, in­clud­ing a 0-0 draw with England. France-born cre­ative at­tacker with great tech­nique. MAS­SIMO MACCARONE 03 BRISBANE ROAR Twice capped for Italy in 2002 and a fruit­ful stint in the Pre­mier League with Mid­dles­brough. The 38-year-old striker is still as in­tel­li­gent as ever, net­ting 28 goals for Em­poli in three sea­sons.

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