We have today announced three changes to our Hyundai A-League roster with the registration of Kerem Bulut and Yusuke Tanaka on injury replacement contracts and the signing of Nick Ward.Western Sydney’s own Hayden Foxe has also joined the coaching staff for the remainder of the season.
Initially signed on AFC Champions League contracts, Bulut and Tanaka have been included in the squad on injury-replacement contracts in place of Brendon Santalab (shoulder) and Shannon Cole (collar bone).
Cole broke his collar bone in Wednesday’s win over Kashima Antlers while Santalab reinjured his shoulder against Adelaide United and will go into surgery on Tuesday with both to undergo an extensive rehab program before their return to action.
Red & Black fans have already seen what Tanaka is capable of having played four matches for the club so far while anticipation grows around the debut of Bulut who has impressed during training.
CEO John Tsatsimas, while disappointed for both Cole and Santalab, was pleased to have been able to firm up the A-League squad for the Club’s ACL title defence and run home of the domestic campaign.
“While there was some initial red tape in adding players to our roster following the departure of several players in January, to be able to secure our roster for the remainder of the season is very promising,” said Tsatsimas.
“Yusuke is a fantastic player and we are very excited to see what Kerem will produce in the coming months.
“We have a number of fantastic young local players on our books including Kearyn Baccus, Jaushua Sotirio, Alusine Fofanah, Liam Youlley, Marty Lo, Shane D’Cunha and Daniel Alessi but with the NPL season kicking off next month and a few serious injuries to key players we have had to solidify our depth with some new acquisitions.
“Nick was a late inclusion into the squad following these injuries and brings a wealth of A-League experience. He has won both the National Soccer League and Hyundai A-League and his winning mentality will be a benefit to the squad.”
With over 140 appearances in the Hyundai A-League, Nick Ward has considerable experience in the Hyundai A-League and will add depth and an attacking threat to the first team squad.
A product of the Australian Institute of Sport, Ward started his senior career with Perth Glory in the National Soccer League before playing in the Championship with Queens Park Rangers.
Foxe joins Wanderers Head Coach Tony Popovic’s backroom staff for the remainder of the season and will bring local and international knowledge to the group.
“We are delighted to have Hayden Foxe join our Club’s backroom staff for the remainder of the season,” continued Tsatsimas.
“Hayden is from Western Sydney and played his juniors at Blacktown City so he knows the region very well and is a great fit for our Club.”
All three players will be available for selection in this Saturday’s Sydney Derby at Pirtek Stadium. Kick-off is at 7:30pm with live coverage on Fox Sports 505.
Western Sydney Wanderers 2014/15 Hyundai A-League squad
1. Ante Covic (GK), 3. Yusuke Tanaka, 4. Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 5. Brendan Hamill, 6. Antony Golec, 7. Labinot Haliti, 8. Mateo Poljak, 9. Tomi Juric, 10. Yojiro Takahagi, 12. Nikita Rukavytsya, 13. Matthew Spiranovic, 14. Kerem Bulut, 15. Yianni Perkatis, 16. Jaushua Sotirio, 17. Romeo Castelen, 18. Iacopo La Rocca, 19. Mark Bridge, 20. Dean Bouzanis (GK), 23. Jason Trifiro, 25. Sam Gallaway, 31. Alusine Fofanah, 32. Daniel Alessi, Nick Ward (TBC)
Long-term Injury List
2. Shannon Cole, 11. Brendon Santalab, 21. Martin Lo, 34. Golgol Mebrahtu
Western Sydney Wanderers 2015 AFC Champions League 30 man squad
1. Ante Covic (GK), 2. Shannon Cole*, 3. Yusuke Tanaka, 4. Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 5. Brendan Hamill, 6. Antony Golec, 7. Labinot Haliti, 9. Tomi Juric, 10. Yojiro Takahagi, 11. Brendon Santalab*, 12. Nikita Rukavytsya, 13. Matthew Spiranovic, 14. Kerem Bulut, 15. Yianni Perkatis, 16. Jaushua Sotirio, 17. Romeo Castelen, 18. Iacopo La Rocca, 19. Mark Bridge, 20. Dean Bouzanis (GK), 23. Jason Trifiro, 25. Sam Gallaway, 30. Thomas Heward-Belle (GK), 31. Alusine Fofanah, 32. Daniel Alessi, 33. Nick Kalmar, 35. Kearyn Baccus, 36. Liam Youlley, 37. Jonathan Aspropotamitis, 38. Steve Kuzmanovski, 39. Shayne D’Cunha