Western United FC: Every signing from the Hyundai A-League's newest club

Western United FC's journey to their inaugural Hyundai A-League  campaign in 2019/20 is gathering pace, with the announcement of the coach who will lead them into battle: former Wellington Phoenix boss Mark Rudan.  

It's been a whirlwind few months for the Hyundai A-League's newest franchise, who unveiled the club's official playing colours and name back in mid-February and confirmed their logo in May, along with the announcement of a deal with global sports brand Kappa to provide playing and training kit. 

And the on-field signings keep on coming, too, with 16 now on the books.

We'll keep you up to date with all the latest signings and other Western United FC news right here as we edge closer to the club's first game in the Hyundai A-League next season.

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NEW STAR IS COMING: Why Kone snubbed European offers to join Western United FC
BADGE OF HONOUR: Western United announce their official club logo

Who have Western United FC signed?

Panagiotis Kone

The Hyundai A-League's newest club turned heads around the country when they announced the signature of Greek international and experienced Serie A veteran.

Kone, 31, pledged his allegiance on the 1st of February and will bring a host of experience to Australia when the 2019/2020 campaign gets underway.

SIGNING NEWS: Western Melbourne Group announce international marquee

The midfielder starred for Greece at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil and has played 160 matches in the Italian top flight, where he captained Bologna.

He was also nominated for the 2013 FIFA Puskas award for an amazing bicycle kick he scored for Bologna against Napoli.

Kone
Kone (8) battles for the ball with another Hyundai A-League favourite, Victory's Keisuke Honda, at the 2014 FIFA World Cup

Josh Risdon

The Caltex Socceroo and experienced Hyundai A-League fullback became Western United FC's second signing 12 days after Kone put pen to paper.

Risdon, 26, has been one of the competition's most consistent fullbacks since his debut for Perth Glory in 2010.

SIGNING NEWS: Risdon becomes Western United's first Australian recruit

Since then, the Bunbury-born flyer has amassed 170 Hyundai A-League appearances and was one of Australia's most impressive performers at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. 

Josh Risdon
Josh Risdon

Ersan Gulum 

The hugely experienced 31-year-old central defender brings international experience, as well as top-level European know-how with Turkish giants Besiktas, to Western United. 

SIGNING NEWS: Western United snap up Turkey international

He is no stranger to the Hyundai A-League, having played 22 games with Adelaide United in 2017/18, and the club hope he will play a key role in developing the younger players as well as providing a calming presence at the back in their eagerly anticipated debut season. 

Ersan Gulum
Gulum in action for Adelaide United in 2017/18

Scott McDonald

The ex-Caltex Socceroos striker became United's 13th signing when he joined the club on May 8, the same day the club unveiled their new logo.

McDonald has scored 180 goals in over 500 first team games for clubs like Celtic, Motherwell, Middlesbrough and - most recenlty - Partick Thistle.

SIGNING NEWS: Former Australian international striker joins Western United FC

The 35-year-old also featured 26 times for the Caltex Socceroos.

Scott McDonald
New Western United FC recruit Scott McDonald

Filip Kurto

A huge coup for United to lure the impressive Polish gloveman across the ditch after a superb season with Wellington Phoenix.

The 27-year-old enjoyed a superb first season in the competition under Mark Rudan at Phoenix, taking out the Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Goalkeeper of the Year award.

SIGNING NEWS: Phoenix star Kurto swaps Wellington for Western United

He had joined Wellington in 2018 after moving from Eredivisie outfit Roda JC.

Wellington Phoenix's Filip Kurto took out the Goalkeeper of the Year Award
Filip Kurto was named the best keeper of the 2018/19 Season

Connor Chapman

Bolstering Western United FC's defensive ranks is the former Melbourne City and Newcastle Jets defender, who inked his deal with Western United on the 7th of March.

Chapman, an Australia youth international, has spent the last couple of seasons in Korea, where he established himself as a K-League regular for Incheon United and Pohang Steelers.

SIGNING NEWS: Chapman joins Western United

A central defender by trade, the 24-year-old has been sometimes been deployed as a defensive midfielder and at fullback during his stint overseas.

That experience will undoubtedly benefit the Sydney-born player, who is ready to show what he's learned while plying his trade in one of Asia's toughest competitions. 

Connor Chapman
Former Melbourne City star Connor Chapman has returned from Korea to join Western United

Brendan Hamill

The ex-Wanderers skipper joins an impressive list of defenders at the club after agreeing to a one-year deal to return to the City where he started his Hyundai A-League career.

The Australian youth international, 26, has played over 130 times in the competition.

SIGNING NEWS: Hamill joins Hyundai A-League newcomers Western United

He started his career in the Hyundai A-League with Melbourne Heart, playing two seasons with the club before moving to Korea.

Aaron Calver

The 23-year-old joined the club on March 12 as Western United FC's second-youngest signing.

Calver has made 44 appearances in the Hyundai A-League with Sydney FC and moves south on a two-year contract.

SIGNING NEWS: Sydney FC defender the latest to join Western United

He'll view the move to Western United FC as a chance for a fresh start and an opportunity to try and establish himself as a starting player in the Hyundai A-League.

Calver celebrates his goal v Central Coast Mariners in January 2019
Aaron Calver heads south from Sydney

Sebastian Pasquali

Considered one of the most talented young players in the country, Pasquali rose to prominence in the Hyundai A-League at Melbourne Victory.

He starred for the club during the International Champions Cup tournament up against Italian champions Juventus in 2016.

SIGNING NEWS: Pasquali one of three youngsters to join United

His performance caught the eye of European scouts, with Dutch powerhouse Ajax signing Pasquali soon after, with the 19-year-old now back looking for a chance to play senior football regularly in the Hyundai A-League.

Sebastian Pasquali
Seb Pasquali is back in the Hyundai A-League after a stint in Europe

Apostolos Stamatelopoulos

A gifted goalscorer, Stamatelopoulos has been playing with Adelaide United since 2017 after signing a two-year scholarship deal with the Reds.

APO DEPARTS: Young striker departs Adelaide United

He has gone on to make 16 appearances in the Hyundai A-League, scoring two goals, including one this season against Central Coast Mariners.

Stamatelopoulos has also made four appearances for Australia's U-20 team.

Apostolos Stamatelopoulos
Apostolos Stamatelopoulos

Dylan Pierias

Pierias became the first player born in the 21st century to play in the Hyundai A-League when he debuted for Melbourne City against Brisbane Roar in February 2017 at the age of 16.

He is a versatile defender with national experience at the U-20 level, and played his junior football in western Melbourne at Keilor Park Soccer Club.

NEW START FOR PIERIAS: Talented fullback leaves Melbourne City

Pierias played a key part in City's Foxtel National Youth League Championship in 2017, in a team that also included Caltex Socceroos and Celtic starlet Daniel Arzani.

Pierias
Dylan Pierias (right) challenges coach Patrick Kisnorbo during training with Melbourne City

Valentino Yuel

Yuel signed for Western United on March 25 from NPL Victoria outfit Bentleigh Greens.

Formerly of Adelaide City, Yuel signed for the Greens in November 2018 and impressed under the tutelage of ex-Bentleigh boss John Anastasiadis.

The 24-year-old is an exciting winger with pace to burn and an excellent delivery into the box.

Yuel
Valentino Yuel in action for Adelaide City

Connor Pain

Former Melbourne Victory winger Connor Pain will return to Melbourne with Western United following confirmation of his signature on April 2015.

The Central Coast Mariners star has been a regular for the Gosford-based Mariners after moving from Victory in 2016, making 73 appearances in total.

Connor Pain
Connor Pain

Josh Cavallo

Talented midfielder Josh Cavallo was announced as part of a double signing with Connor Pain on April 15.

The 19-year-old Young Socceroos midfielder Cavallo joins the club after excelling for Melbourne City in the Foxtel Y-League for the past two seasons.


Jonathan Aspropotamitis

Making it three new signings on April 15, United confirmed the addition of defender Jonathan Aspropotamitis from the Central Coast Mariners.

The 22-year-old has played 13 games for the Gosford club in 2018/19 after making a strong recovery from an ACL injury.

Aspropotamitis is the fourth defender signed by the club as they edge closer to their introduction into the Hyundai A-League.


James Delianov

The teenager became United's first goalkeeping acquisition after inking a two-year deal on Thursday, May 9.

Delianov made his Hyundai A-League debut during the 2018/19 Season and is the latest of a growing crop o youngsters to join the new club.

He was also between the sticks for the Young Socceroos during the recent AFC U/19 Championships, playing in every match.


Max Burgess

Silky attacking midfielder Max Burgess became the second former Wellington Phoenix player to reunite with boss Rudan at Western United after inking a two-year deal on Monday, May 27.

Rudan plucked Burgess - a former youth product of Sydney FC - from Sydney Olympic last October, and after struggling to break into the team early in the season, the influential attacker enjoyed a strong finish to the campaign. 

SIGNING NEWS: Burgess joins Rudan at Western United

Burgess
Max Burgess enjoyed a breakout campaign in the Hyundai A-League under Rudan at Wellington Phoenix

 

Who is on the Western United coaching staff?

Mark Rudan

A huge success with Wellington Phoenix in 2018/19, his first season as a Hyundai A-League head coach, former Sydney FC and Adelaide United player Rudan led the club to a sixth-place finish on the ladder and their first Finals Series appearance in four years.  

He was confirmed as Western United's first head coach on May 22, 2019, a few weeks after announcing his decision to return to Australia for family reasons. 

Rudan in his Sydney FC days
Mark Rudan as a player with Sydney FC. Can he bring similar success to Western United?

John Hutchinson

Former Central Coast Mariner and Hyundai A-League legend John Hutchinson was confirmed as the club's assistant coach in January, joining Western United after two years coaching in the USA with the Seattle Sounders' USL side.

Hutchinson made more than 200 appearances in the Hyundai A-League, and led the Mariners to their maiden Championship in 2013.

John Hutchinson; Patrick Zwaanswijk
John Hutchinson (left) after winning the 2013 A-League Grand Final with Central Coast Mariners

John Anastasiadis

The highly-rated Bentleigh Greens coach was made the new club's first signing back in January.

Anastasiadis will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the table, having guided Bentleigh to a premiership (2016) and two championships (2015 and 2017) during his tenure. 

An expert on all things Victorian football, Anastasiadis began his career in the National Soccer League with Heidelberg United before heading to Greek powerhouse PAOK, where he would rack up more than 200 games over a nine-year stint.

John Anastasiadis
John Anastasiadis

Frank Juric

Experienced ex-Australia international goalkeeping coach Frank Juric joined Western United on Thursday, 23 May just hours after they unveiled Rudan as head coach.

He joined from Adelaide United, where he spent the past two seasons mentoring Reds 'keepers Paul Izzo and Daniel Margush.

The two-time Caltex Socceroo previously worked at Perth Glory and Melbourne Knights after hanging up the boots in 2009.

His playing career, more than a decade of which was spent in Germany, also included stints with Fortuna Dusseldorf and Hannover.

Frank Juric
Frank Juric is Western United's goalkeeper coach

Name

The club was officially named Western United Football Club back on February 14 after community consultation and an online poll on the club’s website and also conducted by News Limited.

Western United FC won out over other options including Western Melbourne Athletic, Westside Pride and Western Melbourne Warriors.

Colours

United also revealed their club colours on February 14, which will be a green and black playing strip.

While the club’s jersey design has yet to be determined, it’s understood the club will wear green and black stripes, while the away kit will be white.

In late May, WUFC announced a partnership with global brand Kappa for the supply of official training and playing apparel. 

Logo

After month's of consultation with their fan base, the club unveiled their logo on Wednesday, May 8, opting to go with a design that focuses on the ‘W’ as the main design element.

But unlike many club logos, United’s breaks from convention of not being encased in a crest, which the club believes brings an “air of confidence”.

Western United FC new logo
Western United FC's new logo
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This article was originally published on the Hyundai A-League website.
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