Transfer news:Mustafa Amini has left Danish club Randers FC and joined fellow Danish club Aarhus

Mustafa Amini has left Danish club Randers FC and joined fellow Danish club Aarhus

Former Central Coast and Borussia Dortmund midfielder Mustafa Amini has left Danish club Randers FC and joined fellow Danish club Aarhus on a four-year deal.
The 23-year-old played 29 games for Randers and Aarhus described the Aussie as being “high on the club’s transfer list priorities”.

“Musti is an accomplished and versatile midfielder, who has had a good schooling in Dortmund.

“He has a good age and great potential, we believe that he can develop further in AGF. He works hard, is technically sound and has a good tactical understanding – yes, he has a variety of qualities both football and personal levels, which means that he fits very well into AGF,” said Jens Andersson, head of sports at Aarhus.  “I have chosen to switch to AGF, because I have big ambitions, as has the AGF. The club is engaged in an exciting project and is backed by many fans, and I want to be a part of. I’ve played against AGF a few times. “I saw the Cup final, where more than 20,000 fans created a great support – and it helped to convince me that AGF is just the right choice for me,” Amini told the club’s website.

 

Football Federation Australia

Guilherme Finkler will play in Wellington Phoenix

Gui Finkler 1

Friday, 24 June 2016

Russell Gray
Phoenix marquee signing Gui Finkler was on the training field for the Hyundai A-League club less than 24 hours after landing in Wellington from Brazil.

Finkler had been told he didn’t need to train till Monday but insisted he wanted to get straight into it.

The talented former Melbourne Victory midfielder said it was the first time in seven weeks that he had kicked a football and enjoyed every minute of the session.

“I have learnt over the years that the best thing for me when the season ends is not to kick a ball till pre-season training starts,” Finkler said.

“It means I feel fresh and can start to enjoy training straight away.”

Finkler described his move to the Phoenix as a new chapter and challenge in his life and didn’t foresee any problems settling in at his new club.

“I have been through many changes in my soccer life and I think it is good to have a new challenge,” he said,

“I know many of the players because I played against them many times during my four years at Victory.”

Asked how the move came about Finkler said Phoenix head coach Ernie Merrick had rung him towards the end of last season and asked if he was interested in moving to New Zealand.

“He told me about the club and the direction in which it was headed and I liked what I heard,” he said.

“Everyone speaks highly of Ernie at Victory where he used to coach and hopefully he can help me improve my game.

“He knows the way I like to play and I think he has a plan for me.”

Finkler is delighted that Kosta Barbarouses is also coming to the Phoenix.

“Kosta and myself have played together for two years and have developed a good understanding.

“We can help each other both on and off the field.”

Finkler has definite ideas about what he wants to happen this season.

“We have to aim for the trophy and if we don’t win it then we need to be in the top two because it is very difficult to make the grand final if you finish further back.”

 

Football Federation Australia

Transfer news: Liam Reddy has signed a one-year deal with Perth Glory

Liam Reddy

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Perth Glory has bolstered its goalkeeping stocks, securing the services of experienced goalkeeper Liam Reddy for the 2016/17 Hyundai A-League season.

The 34-year old journeyman has playedmore than 230 Hyundai A-League matches and has an impressive tally of 62 clean sheets.

The Sydney-born custodian will head to Western Australia after playing for last season’s Grand Finalists, Western Sydney Wanderers.
Reddy said he was looking forward to being part of an exciting and new era at Perth Glory, which boasts 13-WA born, or raised players and the current Johnny Warren medallist Diego Castro.

“The club has assembled a strong squad for the year and I’m really excited to be part of a Perth Glory that is showing it means business on and off the park” he said.

Ironically, Reddy was the villain for Perth and the hero for Wellington in the 2009-10 elimination final.

He saved two penalties in a shoot-out which crushed Glory’s hearts of advancing further in the play-offs and helped send the Nix to a home semi-final against the Newcastle Jets.

“That was indeed a pulsating and exciting day for me but that’s ancient history. I’m a Glory boy now and I’m coming over to do Perth and Western Australia proud” the father of three said.

Perth coach Kenny Lowe, who this week signed a new two-year deal keeping him at Glory until at least the 2018/19 season, was confident there was a healthy mix of youth and experience amongst his goalkeepers.

“Jordan Thurtell and Nick Feely have got great potential and we’ve also got someone like Liam who’s played hundreds of games and comes to us with a wealth of experience”.

 

But Lowe was quick to quash any suggestions that Reddy would be a walk-up start.

“The top spot is open. You have to earn it. Yes, Liam is a veteran when you look at his stats but it’s up to the other lads to push him and keep him honest, so I expect all the guys to fight for their place” Lowe said.

Reddy is expected to arrive in Perth at the end of the month to start training with his new teammates at the beginning of July.

 

Football Federation Australia

Who will Alen Stajcic pick for the Matildas attack? #Rio2016

Matildas co-captain Lisa De Vanna celebrates a goal with Caitlin Foord.

Matildas co-captain Lisa De Vanna celebrates a goal with Caitlin Foord.

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Josh Bennett @JoshBennett50
With a host of established stars and a new breed of talent emerging, the Matildas are blessed with a sensational attacking third.

But with limited spots available in Alen Stajcic’s 18-player squad for the Games in Rio, who’s in line to make the final cut? We take a look.

Co-Captain Lisa De Vanna is one of the first picked for Australia and is the only player in the squad to have played at the Olympic Games.

De Vanna is the last remaining player from the 2004 Olympic team which made the quarter finals in Greece, losing to Sweden in the final eight.

The 31-year-old’s absolute class, experience and leadership is vital to the squad’s younger players.

While known for terrorising defences in behind, she showed she can strike from distance too with an absolute rocket in Australia’s 1-1 draw against New Zealand in Melbourne this month.

Perhaps Australia’s most prolific attacker, Kyah Simon is another who is certain to be on the plane to Brazil.

 

The Sydney FC star has been in devastating form over the past 12 months and was one of Australia’s best at the 2015 World Cup, scoring three times.

She also bagged four goals in five games in the Olympic qualifying tournament earlier this year and will likely start up top for the opening game in Rio against Canada.

One player who has burst into form in recent times is the lightning-quick powerhouse Caitlin Foord.

The 21-year-old was used as an right wing-back at the World Cup but has been thrust further forward in recent matches with devastating effect.

The Wollongong product netted a superb double against New Zealand in Ballarat three weeks ago with her pace and power dazzling the visitors.

The best athlete in the Green and Gold, Foord’s ability to get up and down the pitch coupled with her versatility make her an invaluable asset to this side.

Another banging on the door for a starting berth is Canberra United goal-scorer Michelle Heyman.

The 27-year-old has been a more than capable option for Alen Stajcic when called upon over the past 12 months and provides a genuine goal-scoring option.

A natural goal-scorer, Heyman netted crucial goals against Japan and DPR Korea in Australia’s unbeaten Olympic qualifiers this year and also found the net in a 9-0 drubbing of Vietnam.

An intriguing sub-plot ahead of the Rio Games is the fitness of Glory striker Sam Kerr.

Kerr has struggled with injuries in recent times and is battling to be fit for the tournament after undergoing surgery last month.

When fit, Kerr is one of Australia’s most dynamic attackers and Stajcic will give her every chance to prove her fitness.

 


One of the youngest players in the squad, Melbourne City’s Larissa Crummer is one player who provides Alen Stajcic with a different dimension in the final third.

Crummer is coming off a breakthrough season in the Westfield W-League where she claimed the Golden Boot award with 11 goals and NAB Young Player of the Year.

A physical player with the ability to hold the ball up and bring others into play, Crummer proved she is a star of the future with a couple of assured performances off the bench at the 2015 World Cup.

Other options for Stajcic in attack are Canberra United’s Ashleigh Sykes and Newcastle Jets’ Tara Andrews, though both weren’t involved against the Kiwis.

 

Football Federation Australia

Westfield Matildas to face Brazil in lead up to Rio Games #Rio2016

Kyah Simon fired home a late goal which proved to be the winner when the Matildas beat Brazil at the World Cup in Canada.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Staff Writer
The Westfield Matildas’ preparations for the Rio Games have been bolstered with confirmation they will play an international match against 8th world ranked Brazil on 23 July in Fortaleza.

The match, which was announced by the Brazilian Football Confederation, will provide a valuable hit out for the Westfield Matildas, who are ranked 5th on the FIFA world rankings, in their bid to become the first Australian team to win a football medal at the Games.

“Securing a match of this nature against Brazil in Fortaleza is a fantastic result for the Matildas and women’s football,” said Football Federation Australia (FFA) CEO David Gallop.

“To be able to play against a fellow top ten team and the host nation of the Rio Games is a huge coup for the Matildas as they go for gold.”

 

Westfield Matildas Head Coach Alen Stajcic is delighted to have secured the match with a Brazil team that will also be looking to fine tune ahead of the Games.

“It’s good to be able to play such a high ranked team just 10 days out from the Games,” said Stajcic.

“That’s one of the reasons we’re preparing in Brazil, not only to acclimatise and train over there but also for opportunities like this. I’m really happy we’ve been able to lock this match in and it’s a really important part of our preparations.”

The last meeting between the countries saw the Westfield Matildas record a famous and historic 1-0 victory in the Round of 16 at last year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup.

The Westfield Matildas are grouped alongside Canada, Germany and Zimbabwe for the Rio Games with their first match against the Canadians on 3 August.

The Westfield Matildas’ final 18-player squad for the Rio Games is set to be announced on Monday 4 July with the squad set to depart for Brazil on 5 July.

Match Details

Brazil v Westfield Matildas

Saturday 23 July 2016

Estádio Presidente Vargas, Fortaleza

Kick-Off 4pm local time (5am AEST Sunday 24 July)

 

Westfield Matildas v Brazil – record

Played 12; Won 5, Drawn 0, Lost 7

 

Last meeting

Brazil 0

Westfield Matildas 1 (Simon 80’)

21 June 2015 in Moncton, Canada

 

Football Federation Australia

Top 25 players outside the Hyundai A-League -Nikola Roganovic (South Melbourne)

Nikola Roganovic (South Melbourne) – Goalkeeper: Has had a taste of the A-League with Melbourne Heart and has established himself as the leading gloveman in Victoria. Known for his acrobatic and spectacular saves, Roganovic has also made a habit of pulling off big saves from the penalty spot. *Pic credit – Mark Avellino

 

Football Federation Australia

Top 25 players outside the Hyundai A-League -Troy Ruthven (Bentleigh Greens)

Troy Ruthven (Bentleigh Greens) – Midfielder: The versatile 25-year-old can play as either an attacking or defensive midfielder. He has the ability to win the ball, hit a pass or strike on goal, which makes him an all-round threat. Ruthven, from Queensland, is also deadly from the set-piece. *Pic credit – Peter Psarros

 

Football Federation Australia