The NRMA Insurance Western Sydney Wanderers have signed Lachlan Scott and Mario Shabow to first team contracts.
Forward Lachlan Scott and midfielder Mario Shabow have both signed one year Hyundai A-League contracts, becoming the first players from the newly-established Wanderers Academy to earn deals with the first team.
It is an early mark of approval for the new academy which has seen the Red & Black establish a direct pathway from U13s to senior football with a total of seven teams in the PS4 NPL competitions along with the existing Hyundai A-League, Westfield W-League, Foxtel NYL and Powerchair teams.
Fans have already seen a glimpse of Shabow when the teenager made a brief cameo in a win against Central Coast Mariners, highlighted by an impressive spin as a late substitute in the 2-0 victory.
The contract is a dream come true for Shabow who has become the first player to make the transition from the Red & Black Bloc to the Wanderers first team: the 18-year-old being a regular on the terraces since attending the Club’s first ever game against Nepean FC in 2012.
“I’m a very passionate fan of the Wanderers: playing for the team I support just makes me more passionate and makes me want it more. Not a lot of players can say they play for the team they support so it’s a great feeling signing my first senior contract here,” said Shabow.
“I still remember the first pre-season game in 2012 and the first few moments when I fell in love with the club and the crest and now being on the other side makes me look back and wonder how it came so quick. I can’t wait to put that jersey on again.
“The time I’ve spent with the Wanderers so far has been the best in my life, I feel very strong, the fittest I’ve been and hopefully I can continue improving.”
Scott too is a name familiar with a number of Wanderers fans with the recently announced Foxtel NYL Player of the Season catching the eye with a number of impressive goal scoring efforts.
Having scored 15 goals in 18 appearances for the Wanderers this season in all competitions, the 19-year-old really turned heads when he came off the bench to score five goals against defending champions, Spirit FC, in the Red & Black’s historic first ever NPL match.
“I’m really happy to have signed a professional contract with the Wanderers and I’m looking forward to a year of hard work to keep improving. Popa is such a hard coach but so rewarding: he pushes you so you keep improving,” said Scott.
“Training with the first team is at such a high intensity but a lot of the boys have helped me: blokes like Bridgey, Santa and Dimas have kept me motivated and I’m enjoying training with such quality players.
“I’m a striker, scoring goals is my job and working hard so I can score for the Hyundai A-League team is what I have to do.”
Hyundai A-League appearances: 1
Foxtel NYL appearances: 6 (3 goals)
PS4 NPL2 appearances: 10 (5 goals)
Foxtel NYL appearances: 8 (4 goals)
PS4 NPL2 appearances: 10 (12 goals)