Around the grounds: The major responsibility for the Wanderers’ new leaders
An honoured Dylan McGowan says coach Markus Babbel had a simple message after naming the defender as part of Western Sydney Wanderers’ leadership group.
McGowan, who is about to head into his first season with the club, was appointed vice-captain of the Wanderers on Sunday, with Mitchell Duke the skipper.
It’s a responsibility the pair are thrilled to embrace and McGowan revealed they have a major responsibility given to them by the boss.
“I have spoken to Markus and the message from him was to make sure this club gets back to where it belongs and where it has been in the past and that starts within the changing room,” McGowan said.
INS AND OUTS: All of Western Sydney Wanderers signings for the 2019/20 Season
NEW-LOOK WANDERERS: Babbel impressed by team spirit ahead of 2019/20 Season
“We’ve got these fantastic facilities that have been built, the stadium, the training ground and now it’s time for the boys within the changing room to live up to the tag we have as one of the biggest clubs in the league.”
With Duke currently sidelined through injury, McGowan will lead the Wanderers in Wednesday night’s FFA Cup 2019 Round of 32 clash against NSW NPL powerhouse Sydney United 58.
The match at Campbelltown Stadium kicks off at 7.30pm (AEST).
Another signing imminent at ‘Wanderland’
Still on the Wanderers and coach Markus Babbel has revealed the club is hoping to announce another key recruit “in coming weeks”.
The German coach has made some key additions to his squad already this off-season but admits he’s “always looking for good players”.
“But it’s not so easy," Babbel said. "We don’t want players to just come here for the lifestyle. We want players that 100% identify with this club to have success and we’re working on this.
“I’m very optimistic in the next few days, weeks we’ll get another player. Because we need quality, we need to challenge the team because in the team last season there wasn’t a challenge there, every player knew they were playing and this is never good.
“The players have to fight for their spot and if you get more quality in the team then even better.”
Remember when: Back to where it all began
It’s a historic day for the Hyundai A-League, with today marking exactly 14 years since the very first match in the competition.
Friday, August 26, 2005 saw the Hyundai A-League officially kick-off with two matches – in Newcastle and Perth.
They both saw 1-0 wins to the away teams, with Adelaide United prevailing over the Jets, before the Central Coast Mariners overcame Perth Glory.
And it was the Reds’ Carl Veart that had the honour of scoring the very first goal, which you can relieve below.