Goalkeepers depart the Nix

The Wellington Phoenix will have a new-look goalkeeping union for the 2024-25 A-Leagues.

Women’s goalkeepers Brianna Edwards and Rylee Foster won’t be returning to Wellington next season, while men’s ‘keeper Jack Duncan has signed with Melbourne Victory.

Duncan’s departure comes a month after A-League goalkeeper of the year Alex Paulsen moved from the Phoenix to English Premier League side A.F.C. Bournemouth.

WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND – NOVEMBER 04: Brianna Edwards and Aimee Danieli of the Phoenix take the field to warm up of the Phoenix during the A-League Women round three match between Wellington Phoenix and Brisbane Roar at Sky Stadium, on November 04, 2023, in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

Edwards made 23 appearances for the club over the past three seasons.

The young Football Ferns ‘keeper made her A-League debut late in the team’s maiden campaign and went on to start all but one of the women’s matches in the 2022-23 A-League.

She was limited to four appearances last season but still provided one of the moments of the year when she came off the bench against Canberra United to save a penalty.

“It has been an honour to wear the Nix jersey and live and play in Wellington,” Edwards said.

“New Zealand has become my second home and I’m so grateful to the club, my teammates and the fans for making the last three seasons so memorable.

“Walking out onto Sky Stadium in the first professional women’s football game played in New Zealand will always be one of the highlights of my career.”

WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND – OCTOBER 11: Rylee Foster looks on during a Wellington Phoenix A-League Women media opportunity at NZCIS on October 11, 2023 in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

Rylee Foster joined the Phoenix on the eve of the 2023-24 season, two years on from an horrific car accident that halted her promising career.

The Canadian went on to start 19 of the team’s 22 matches, keeping three clean sheets and helping the women achieve their highest finish.

“I just want to thank the Wellington Phoenix organisation; all of the staff, all of the players, all of the coaching staff, the fans and everyone in Wellington for accepting me with open arms,” Foster said.

“I always said the club took a big risk in taking me on and they were an instrumental part of my return to the professional game.

“If it wasn’t for the Phoenix I wouldn’t be able to take the next steps in my career like I’m able to now.

“It was an honour to be part of an historical run with the Phoenix this year. Although we didn’t achieve what we wanted to, I know the club has been put into a better position to achieve greatness and win some hardware in the future.

“I’ll miss everyone and I’ll be the Phoenix’s number one fan for the men’s and women’s sides for the season to come.”

WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND – APRIL 16: Jack Duncan looks on during a Wellington Phoenix A-League training session at NZCIS on April 16, 2024 in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

Jack Duncan joined the Nix on a one-year contract last June as a replacement for Oli Sail.

The experienced Australian goalkeeper didn’t get the opportunity to play an A-League match for the club, but he provided invaluable support and competition for Alex Paulsen.

“I want to say thank you to everyone at the Phoenix for making my time and my family’s time really enjoyable throughout the last year,” Duncan said.

“Even though it wasn’t personally what I wanted in terms of playing time, it was still a really enjoyable year for us in Wellington and it’s a place that will always hold a special place in our family’s history.

“We really enjoyed our time there and all the fans made me feel welcome.

“To the boys and the coaching staff: thank you for everything. I met some really good people and made some good friends at the Phoenix, and I look forward to watching them in the future.”

The club thanks Rylee, Brianna and Jack for their contributions to the Wellington Phoenix and wishes them all the best for their futures.