Signing news: Brillante joins Melbourne City

Erick Mombaerts has bolstered his Melbourne City midfield with the signing of Josh Brillante.

Brillante, 26, was released by the Hyundai A-League Champions Sydney FC in May and joins City on a two-year deal.

“This is an exciting time in Melbourne City’s journey, and I can’t wait to contribute and be a part of it,” Brillante told the club website.

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"The opportunity to work with the new manager is really exciting - his vision is clear and ambitious, and we’re training at some of the best facilities in Australia. 

“There is always a lot of work to do in pre-season, but I’m already looking to the first home game to show the fans what I can do. I’ve played in front of them before and know how passionate they are, and I’m determined to deliver football they’re proud to watch.”

A five-time capped Caltex Socceroo, Brillante is widely regarded as one of the competition’s premier midfielders, a reputation earned through his tenure at the Sky Blues where he won two Premierships, two Championships and an FFA Cup.

The ex-Gold Coast United and Newcastle Jets man plied his trade for Serie A club Fiorentina in 2014, but made just two appearances before loan stints at Empoli and Como, before returning to Australia with Sydney.

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Melbourne City FC Director of Football, Michael Petrillo said: “Josh is one of the best holding midfielders in Australia. He’s extremely mobile, works very hard, has a great attitude and character, so we’re thrilled that he’s decided to join us."

“He’s an intelligent player who can help us build an important link between defence and attack when we have the ball, while offering protection to our defenders when we’re without it.

“Josh’s experience in Italy and Australia, and with the Australian national team, will also be key in helping our young players develop.”

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