Transfer rumours: Bozanic offer, Foley in the frame
It appears the Tomi Juric transfer saga is finally coming to an end. The young striker is near to agreeing terms with Roda JC Kerkrade, the Eredivisie club that recently signed Rostyn Griffiths on a two-year deal. It is a great opportunity for the Socceroo to take the next step in his career and national coach Ange Postecoglou is said to have given the move his blessing.
Two current Socceroos may yet find their way back to the A-League. Adelaide United have made a formal offer to midfielder Oliver Bozanic while James Troisi is being pursued not only by Melbourne Victory but their crosstown rivals Melbourne City. Another club believed to be interested in Troisi’s services is the Western Sydney Wanderers, whose Australian marquee Matthew Spiranovic departed for China last month.
An A-League club has held discussions with former Ireland international Kevin Foley. The Wolverhampton stalwart is off contract after a brief spell at FC Copenhagen and looking for a new club. His connection to Australia? Good friend and former Wolves and Ireland teammate Andy Keogh.
An international tug-of-war is developing for the services of 19-year-old West Australian Gethin Jones. The youngster recently made a senior appearance for Everton in their friendly against Leeds United and is currently a Wales’ Under 21 international. However, with the Socceroos right-back position lacking depth, coach Postecoglou is believed to be keen on the defender who holds dual citizenship, and the fullback has been sounded out for a Socceroo call up later this year.
South Melbourne winger Nick Epifano’s display in his club’s FFA Cup loss on penalties to the Palm Beach Sharks has sparked interest from A-League clubs, with Adelaide United and Perth Glory leading the chase. The 20-year-old flew over to Scotland to trial with Dundee United last month but had to return for family reasons and has been in fine form for the SMFC ever since.
Sydney FC’s signing of former Mariners bogey man Matt Simon brings the squad number to 24 but coach Graham Arnold may be looking for one more player to complete his squad, with young winger Max Burgess still hoping to convince the club that he can take his next career step in a Sky Blue shirt. Burgess made five senior appearances with the Newcastle Jets in the latter half of last season but is hoping to re-join the Sky Blues, for whom he played one A-League match in the 2014/15 season opener last October.
@SydneyFC great signing for Sydney FC well done Matt Simon
— Lawrie McKinna (@LawrieMcKinna) August 3, 2015
Meanwhile, former Sydney striker Joel Chianese, the scorer of 11 goals for the club between 2011 and 2014, has been sounded out for a home return. Chianese, who recently joined Sabah FC in the Malaysia Premier League, has scored 5 goals in 5 games for his new club, sparking A-League interest once again.
Melbourne City have not yet given up hope of signing Greek legend Georgios Samaras as their Australian marquee but face stiff competition from New York Cosmos, who are willing to stump up US$3.5 million for his services, while there has also been interest from Sampdoria. Negotiations are ongoing but City’s odds of landing the striker have lengthened dramatically.
Things are still messy at Brisbane Roar, with current owners Bakrie Group unwilling to settle their debts until the sale of the club finally goes through. Meanwhile, the identity of the buyer remains a mystery and after the brief respite that the Liverpool game provided last month, Roar players are once again becoming restless, as are the fans.
And the rest:
Kerem Bulut, recently signed by Greek club Iraklis, is believed to have become involved in an argument with coach Nikos Papadopoulos following a fiery training session… Mitchell Duke’s position at Shimizu S-Pulse could be in jeopardy following the resignation of coach Katsumi Oenoki, the man who brought him to the J-League club in February…Italy’s Gazetta dello Sport reports that an A-League club has made inquiries about Milan’s 33-year-old World Cup winner Cristian Zaccardo, who is also wanted by an unnamed Chinese club…a high profile NSW NPL coach may not see out the season…Dario Vidosic is attempting to engineer a move away from Swiss club Sion…interesting A-League conversations are taking place at FC Basel, with former Sydney star Marc Janko now sharing the dressing room with ex-Gold Coast United and Melbourne Victory fullback Adama Traore.
Joao Pedro Watch is back!
Following the young Brazilian’s outstanding form at the FIFA Under20 World Cup in New Zealand in June, it is understood that Manchester United have submitted a 4 million pound offer to Palmeiras for the 18-year-old right back. The flyer destroyed Portugal and Australia Under20 sides in Brazil’s tour of Australia in May before starring at the World Cup in New Zealand and impressing United coach Louis van Gaal.
In the wake of Rafael’s departure from United to Lyon, the youngster many regard as the future Cafu could have an opportunity to work his way into the squad, joining Brazil Under20 teammate Andreas Pereira, should Palmeiras accept United’s offer.