Sydney FC sign young guns

Often criticised for using players past their use-by date, Sydney FC have invested in youth by signing two promising 21-year-olds.

Often criticised for using players past their use-by date, Sydney FC have invested in youth by signing two promising 21-year-olds.

Defender Nathan Sherlock and attacking midfielder Joel Chianese have graduated from the club's youth ranks to win new two-year deals.

The duo have been stand-out performers in the Sky Blues' youth team and have made the most of their limited opportunities when given time in the senior ranks.

The twin signings bring Sydney FC's squad list to 19 players, with former Socceroo Michael Beauchamp, fan favourite Karol Kisel and versatile defender Jamie Coyne coming aboard for the 2011/12 campaign.

"Nathan and Joel are young and talented players but they are also very calm and controlled on the pitch," Sydney FC coach Vitezslav Lavicka said.

"Nathan gives us options in defence as he can play in the centre or on the left or right. He was captain of the Youth team and shows good leadership while Joel is an explosive and quick type of player. He can be creative for us and he has shown in games for us that he has good vision and movement. These are very good qualities for us to have."

"We have a good mix of experienced and young players at the moment but we are now working hard to bring in some quality players from both Europe and Australia to strengthen us more."

Sherlock said: "Although I am only 21, it feels like it's been a long road to get here but I have never stopped trying and working hard to get here so I am over the moon."

"I feel I had a good year with the National Youth League team and now I am just excited about what lies ahead in the next few years."

"One thing for sure is that I will give it and Sydney FC everything I've got."

Chianese, who made his senior debut for Sydney FC off the bench in the ACL meeting with Kashima Antlers last month, looks forward to further development under Lavicka.

"There are a lot of good players at the club so I can learn a lot by watching them but I will also show what I can do," he said.

"It has been a great experience being part of the ACL squad, travelling with the team overseas and seeing how it is done so I am going to work as hard as ever and push for a regular spot in the A-League team."