Marco Kurz says he can’t wait to work with Ola Toivonen as the German coach prepares to stamp his image on Melbourne Victory.
Kurz, 50, was named successor to long-serving Victory coach Kevin Muscat in June after two years in charge of Adelaide United.
The former Bundesliga manager has a sizeable rebuilding job ahead of him following Muscat’s departure, and the exits of star players Keisuke Honda and Kosta Barbarouses.
The club’s sole piece of post-season recruitment has been the acquisition of ex-Brisbane Roar midfielder Jay Barnett on a one-year scholarship contract, while there are four visa positions and a marquee spot for Kurz to play with.
But the scale of his squad renovation is made less daunting by the presence of Swedish star Toivonen, who scored 15 goals in 22 appearances for the four-time Hyundai A-League Champions in 2018/19.
“I’m really excited to work with him,” Kurz told reporters on Wednesday, his first press conference at the helm of Victory.
“He’s a fantastic player. I know from the past it was always hard to control him.
"It’s special to have this kind of player in the A-League and it’s good to have him in our squad.”
Kurz confirmed Victory are in negotiations with overseas and Australian players but said he would not rush the club’s recruitment process.
“I think we need a lot of players because the squad at the moment is not so big.
"At the moment we are in discussions with players from overseas and Australia as well and we are looking forward to building a strong and talented team. But it needs time."
AROUND THE GROUNDS: Kurz makes first new signing at Victory
Victory Chairman Anthony Di Pietro also said fans would need to remain patient.
“We have a marquee position available and there’s a number of discussions underway at the moment," he said. "But it’s too early to tell... it’s just watch this space."
The Kurz era at Victory begins with an FFA Cup Round of 32 tie at home to Newcastle Jets on August 7.