Victory sign French defender

Melbourne Victory have announced the signing of experienced French defender Matthieu Delpierre, with the 33-year-old agreeing to a one-year deal.

Experienced French defender Matthieu Delpierre will call Melbourne home for the next year, with Melbourne Victory confirming it has signed the 33-year-old defender to a one-year-deal.

At six-foot-four inches tall, Delpierre has proven himself as a commanding centre-back of the highest quality, having played 162 games with VfB Stuttgart in the Bundesliga, including leading the club to the League title in 2006/07 as captain, before most recently making an impact in Holland-s Eredevisie with FC Utrecht in the latter part of last season.

Melbourne Victory Coach Kevin Muscat said Delpierre-s time in Europe would add invaluable experience and leadership to his squad, having such a strong European football background, including captaining his club in the UEFA Champions League against some of the biggest football names, including Lionel Messi.

“Matthieu is a proven performer with experience at the highest level against some of the best strikers in Europe, so we know he has what it takes to be successful in the A-League,” Muscat said.

“I-ve certainly been tracking Matthieu-s progress over the past season and have been itching to get him to join us in the A-League, so now I am thrilled we are able to have a Bundesliga winner with us in our 10th anniversary season.

“He will provide real quality to our squad, while also imparting his football knowledge on to the younger players It-s also a bonus that he will be with us for pre-season and can be part of our FFA Cup campaign.

“We know he will have a big impact when we get underway in October, but first of all we-re looking forward to welcoming him to Australia and helping him settle here in Melbourne."

The Frenchman joins star striker Besart Berisha and midfielder Carl Valeri as new additions to Victory-s 2014/15 squad.

Delpierre said he was looking forward to making the move to Melbourne.

“I am really excited about playing in Australia and I-ve already heard so many great things about the fans and the Club,” Delpierre said.

“I know moving to the A-League will be a big challenge, but it is one that I am really happy about and I can-t wait to get started with Kevin and all the Melbourne Victory players."

Matthieu Delpierre DOB: April 26, 1981 Height: 193cm (6- 4”) Position: Centre-back Previous clubs: FC Utrecht (Netherlands) - 2014 TSG 1899 Hoffenheim (Germany) - 2012 - 2014 VfB Stuttgart (Germany) - 2004 - 2012 Lille (France) - 1999 - 2004

Melbourne Victory memberships will go on sale this week.