Sydney lock in Tavares for two more years

Sydney FC have fought off interest from other clubs to re-sign Senegalese international Mickael Tavares for a further two years. 

Tavares, who joined the Sky Blues as an injury replacement in January, will remain with the Sky Blues until the end of the 2016/17 campaign.

The 32-year-old made his first appearance for the harbour-siders against the Central Coast Mariners in a 5-1 win thrashing.

He went on to establish himself as a key member of Graham Arnold’s midfield, making a total of 12 starts for 924 minutes of playing time.

Coach Graham Arnold praised Tavares work ethic and impact during the second half season surge as key reasons for retaining the holding midfielder.

“Mickael is a quality player and his attitude and application since he arrived in January have been fantastic,” Arnold said.

“He has fitted seamlessly into our club and the quality he’s shown on the pitch has left me in no doubt about his importance to the team.

“I’m looking forward to working with Mickael for the next two years as we take on Asia in the Champions League and look to build on our record breaking 2014/15 season.”

The former Fulham and Hamburger SV player said he was delighted to be remaining at the Sky Blues for the next two years as he set his sights on winning the Hyundai A-League and progressing in Asia.

“Sydney FC is a big club and I’m really happy to be staying with the Sky Blues,” Tavares said.

“I want to win trophies with Sydney FC and I believe we can compete for titles in the A-League and Asian Champions League.

“I’m grateful to Arnie and the club for showing faith in me and I already can’t wait for next season to begin.”

Sydney are in a battle to keep their current squad together with no news yet on the future of Golden Boot winner Marc Janko and Tavares’ cousin Jacques Faty.

The club has had little time to reflect on their 3-0 Grand Final loss to Melbourne Victory on the weekend, with a blockbuster encounter against English Premier League giants Tottenham Hotspur looming on May 30.