'Ninkovic is the best thing that happened to Aus football'

A key Caltex Socceroo has lauded the impact of Milos Ninkovic on the Hyundai A-League, believing it surpasses that of even Alessandro Del Piero.

Elsewhere, an Australia youth international has sparked speculation by setting himself on a return home, while Riley McGree could extend his stay.

Catch up with that and more as we wrap up the best bits from clubs and the media in our first Hyundai A-League Paper Talk.


Caltex Socceroos defender Milos Degenek has professed his appreciation for the influence Sydney FC star Milos Ninkovic has had on Australian football.

Degenek, who on Tuesday was named in the 26-man squad that will travel to Turkey for a pre-FIFA World Cup camp, is a big fan of the former Johnny Warren Medal Winner, with whom he shares Serbian heritage.

In an interview with Belgrade-based publication Kurir, Degenek spoke glowingly of the Sky Blues playmaker.

"Ninkovic is the most appreciated footballer in Australia. [His arrival is] the best thing that happened to Australian football," Degenek said

"He has given Australia more than Alessandro Del Piero!

"A phenomenal guy, doing a great job, a unique player. Australia is honoured to have such a player in the A-League."

Milos Ninkovic and Milos Degenek
Milos Ninkovic has a big fan in Milos Degenek.


Newcastle Jets are working on keeping Riley McGree at the club, CEO Lawrie McKinna recently confirmed to the Newcastle Herald.

McGree, scorer of that stunning Semi Final scorpion kick, made a big impression during a brief loan spell in the Hunter, netting five times in 12 matches.

He is due to return to Club Brugge for next term, but the Jets are in discussions with the Belgian outfit.

"We're interested in keeping him, and we're speaking to Club Brugge," McKinna said.

"We'd definitely be interested in getting him on loan, but it won't happen quickly. It will depend on what they want to do with him."

Riley McGree
Riley McGree is a wanted man.


Hyundai A-League clubs seeking a shot-stopper will have sat up with news of Danijel Nizic's decision to return home.

The 23-year-old Olyroo is leaving Morecambe after two seasons with the League Two outfit, making 12 appearances.

He also spent time at Burnley during his stay in England but has now chosen to head back to Australia.

"I've had a great two years here but I've missed my family and friends back home an awful lot," Nizic, a former Sydney FC youth player, told the Morecambe website.

“I've thought about it a lot over the past few months and it's a tough decision to make, I've made a lot of friends here and the club's been good to me."


One young Aussie to have already made a switch this off-season is Jonathan Aspro and the defender has paid tribute to ex-employers Western Sydney Wanderers.

Aspro is set to link up with Central Coast Mariners after notching 43 appearances across four seasons for Western Sydney.

"This club has been nothing but deeply entrenched in my heart for the last four years, such is the passion I have for the football club and I'll never forget the opportunity this great club gave me at 18," the young talent wrote on Twitter.


It would hardly be the silly season without the occasional Wikipedia profile edit and that's exactly what Michael Jakobsen earned with his move to Adelaide United.

The Reds, though, were happy to play along with this one.