Western Sydney have signed Swedish striker Marcus Antonsson for the next two A-League Men’s seasons as they attempt to chase Premier League silverware.
Premiers and grand finalists Melbourne City have also been busy, with the Socceroo adding veteran midfielder Steven Ugarkovic to replace the departed Aidan O’Neill.
Antonsson joins a Wanderers side that ended a six-year finals drought last season but were knocked out by Saudi club Al-Adalah in the elimination final.
The 32-year-old has played mostly in Sweden’s Allsvenskan, most recently for Malmo, but has also played in the English Championship with Leeds United and in League One with Blackburn Rovers.
He has made four European Champions League and 21 Europa League appearances and will need to add quality after Wanderers lost Tunisian international Amor Lioni.
„We are extremely proud to have Marcus’ talented player join the Wanderers squad for the next two seasons,” coach Marco Rudan said in a statement.
„He is not only an experienced player, but a natural leader, and we welcome him to an exciting group of players.
„His technical skill and ability will help guide our next generation of Wanderers players through the ranks and we are very excited to see him back in action.”
After a stunning campaign in Wellington, Ugarkovic joins City until the end of 2024-25 with an option for a third season.
The 28-year-old has made 194 ALM appearances for Phoenix, Western Sydney and Newcastle.
„Having the chance to play for a big club who have been premiers three years in a row was a big drawcard for me and I’m really looking forward to the Champions League campaign,” said Ugarkovic.
„I’ve played in different settings over the years, so I feel I have the experience and ability to adapt to City’s style of play.”
With City’s abundance of post-season exits, Ugarkovic will provide crucial experience.
„Steven is a player we have admired for some time,” City director of football Michael Petrillo said.
“He has a great work ethic, good passing range and an aggressive mindset.
„He is well-suited to a defensive midfield role in City’s style.”
„Całkowity introwertyk. Nieprzejednany specjalista od sieci. Przyjazny fanatyk bekonu. Student ekstremalnych. Miłośnik piwa. Organizator.”