Signing news: Susaeta makes A-League return with Macarthur, Japanese whizz-kid heads to Roar

Macarthur FC are forming a Spanish connection in Sydney’s south west having announced the signing of experienced attacker Markel Susaeta. 

The 32-year-old ran out for Melbourne City in the A-League last year after notching up more than 500 appearances for La Lita outfit Athletic Bilbao.

Susaeta joins another Basque veteran in Ante Milicic’s squad, five days after the start-up club unveiled the signing of midfielder Beñat Etxebarria.

The duo played together for six seasons at the San Mamés Stadium, starring in a UEFA Champions League campaign and a Spanish Supercopa triumph in 2015.

Susaeta joined up with Erick Mombaerts’ City side in 2019/20, scoring two goals in 10 matches before returning to Europe following the league’s suspension due to the COVID-19 lockdown.

The one-cap Spain international becomes the fourth overseas visa player in Ante Milicic’s squad for the Bulls’ debut A-League campaign, joining Beñat, French midfielder Loïc Puyo and English striker Matt Derbyshire. 

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“Both Markel and Beñat joining is a real coup for the club. Their ability and experience will be invaluable,” said Milicic. 

“I’m extremely happy with the shape of and balance the squad is taking and looking forward to seeing his influence on the younger members of the squad,” he added.

Susaeta sealed the move on Wednesday and is completing a mandatory 14-day isolation period before joining up with Macarthur‘s first-team squad.

‘One of Japan’s most exciting prospects’ arrives in Queensland

Brisbane Roar have added another attacking weapon to Warren Moon’s 2020/21 roster in the form of Japanese youngster Riku Danzaki.

The 20-year-old has turned out 13 times for Consadole Sapporo, including three appearance in the J-League, and was part of the squad that reached the final of 2019 J-League Cup.

Danzaki made his debut as an 18-year-old and netted his first senior goal in a 4-1 win against Shonan Bellmare in April 2019, and Moon touted the young gun as one of Japan's best up and coming players.

“He’s a player who is coming to Brisbane to develop himself as a player and continue building what is sure to be a huge career in front of him – he’s regarded as one of Japan’s most exciting prospects,” said Moon.

“He will not only bring experience, but flair, enthusiasm and talent that I believe is a massive addition to our squad and will be exciting to watch this season.”

Danzaki becomes Roar’s fourth overseas visa player, joining Macaulay Gillesphey, Jay O’Shea and Tom Arnold – the trio featured in Brisbane's run to the A-League Finals Series last season following a fourth-placed finish.

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