The Western Sydney Wanderers today announced the signing of Dutch international Romeo Castelen on a two year contract.
Having spent the past season with RKC Waalwijk in the Eredivisie, Castelen will play outside of Europe for the first time in his career when he lands in Australia next week.
While the Hyundai A-League will be new territory for the 31-year-old, there will be some familiarity for Castelen as he has played against current Wanderer Matthew Spiranovic while the pair was in Germany.
The speedy winger, who plied his trade for Hamburg at the time, was also a former team mate of one of Western Sydney’s proudest exports Brett Holman at Dutch heavyweights Feyenoord.
Castelen's pedigree includes a successful World Cup Qualifying campaign with the Netherlands as well as experience in the UEFA Europa League.
Wanderers CEO John Tsatsimas said that Castelen was a perfect addition to the Club.
“Romeo is coming here fresh from a season in the Dutch first division where he was a standout for his Club. He’s a creative, attacking player and we look forward to him bringing that form to the Wanderers,” said Tsatsimas.
“His 10 national team caps for the Netherlands speak for themselves in terms of his ability. Romeo is a great talent who will make a seamless transition to A-League football.
“It is players of this quality that we look to bring to the Wanderers. Having Romeo on board will raise the standard of our squad and that’s what we want out of a new signing.”
Castelen earned his 10 international caps playing alongside the likes of Robin van Persie, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Phillip Cocu, starting in the majority of matches he played in under coach Marco van Basten.
Castelen will link up with the Wanderers in the coming weeks to commence pre-season training in preparation for a busy 2014/15 schedule that kicks off with a Westfield FFA Cup tie scheduled for 12 August before the Club’s AFC Champions League Quarter Final matches against Guangzhou Evergrande at Pirtek Stadium on 20 August and Tianhe Stadium in Guangzhou on 27 August.
The Wanderers kick-off their Hyundai A-League campaign on Friday 10 October against Melbourne Victory in Melbourne.
Born: 03-May-83, Paramaribo, Suriname
Junior/youth clubs: De Volewijckers, Sparta Rotterdam, Den Haag
Senior National Team (Netherlands) 10 apps (1 gl)
U21 National Team (Netherlands)
2000-2004 Den Haag (Netherlands) 83 apps (20gls)
2005-2007 Feyenoord (Netherlands) 65 apps (20gls)
2007-2012 Hamburg (Germany) 17 apps (1gl)
2012-2013 Volga Nizhny Novgorod (Russia) 2 apps (0gls)
2013-2014 Waalwijk (Netherlands) 33 apps (6 gls)
Western Sydney Wanderers Hyundai A-League squad for 2014/15 season: 1. Ante Covic, 2. Shannon Cole, 4. Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 7. Labinot Haliti, 8. Mateo Poljak, 9. Tomi Juric, 11. Brendon Santalab, 13. Matthew Spiranovic, 14. Kwabena Appiah, 15. Yianni Perkatis, 18. Iacopo La Rocca, 19. Mark Bridge, 23. Jason Trifiro, 31. Alusine Fofanah, 32. Daniel Alessi, 33. Daniel Mullen, 34. Golgol Mebrahtu, 35. Antony Golec, Dean Bouzanis (number TBC), Romeo Castelen (number TBC), Brendan Hamill (number TBC), Vitor Saba (number TBC)