CHAMPIONSHIP-winning attacking midfielder Adrian Caceres will join Wellington Phoenix FC for the remainder of the Hyundai A-League 2009/10 season after inking a deal at the weekend.
The 27-year-old Argentina-born Australian, released from the final year of his two-year contract with the Central Coast Mariners by mutual consent, will join the Phoenix on in Wellington on Wednesday and could be in the mix to play for his new team against Adelaide United at Westpac Stadium on Friday night pending final medical and fitness tests.
Caceres was instrumental in leading Melbourne Victory to the Hyundai A-League championship in 2006/07 and enjoyed two stellar seasons with the Victorian club after signing on from Perth Glory following the inaugural season of the competition.
He was then snapped up on a two-year deal by the Mariners in 2008/09. He played 22 games for the Gosford outfit that season and scored two goals. However, after not being picked to play for the Mariners in the first four games of the 2009/10 campaign, Caceres sought – and was granted – an early out.
Phoenix chief executive Tony Pignata said the New Zealand-based club was thrilled to have secured the services of Caceres up on a deal that will see him in black and gold till at least the end of the season.
“Adrian-s a very attack-minded player. To make the playoffs we need to add depth to the squad and Adrian, who has a championship-winning pedigree with Melbourne Victory, will add attacking flair to the team.
“He-ll join us in Wellington on Wednesday and, all going well with the medical and fitness tests, he-ll be in consideration for Friday night-s game against Adelaide at Westpac Stadium.”
Born in Buenos Aires, Caceres previously played for Perth in the National Soccer League and Southampton, Brentford, Hull City, Yeovil, Aldershot and Wycombe Wanderers in England.
A skillful midfielder with a canny talent for scoring, Caceres was the creative pulse of the Victory in 2006/07 and 2007/08, playing 42 games and scoring six goals. He will be a significant boost to the Phoenix-s creative capacity for the remainder of their campaign this season.
Date of birth:
January 10, 1982 in Buenos Aires, Argentina
Height, weight: 1.78m, 84kg
Playing position: Attacking midfielder
Club history: 2008-09 Central Coast Mariners; 2006-08 Melbourne Victory; 2004-05 Wycombe Wanderers (Eng); 2004-05 Aldershot (Eng); 2004-05 Yeovil (Eng); 2002-04, 2005-06 Perth Glory; 2001-02 Hull City (Eng); 2001-02 Brentford (Eng); 2000-01 Southampton (Eng); 1999-2000 Perth FC.
Hyundai A-League debut appearance: v Central Coast Mariners (L0-1), Members Equity Stadium, August 26, 2005.
Hyundai A-League debut goal: v Melbourne Victory (D2-2), Olympic Park, September 4, 2005.