Mariners sign proven Spanish striker

New Mariners number 9 - AsdrubalNew Mariners number 9 - Asdrubal

The Central Coast Mariners have signed 26-year-old Spanish striker, ‘Asdrúbal’, for one year, ahead of the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 season.

Asdrúbal played most of his career in Spain with his home town club, ‘UD Las Palmas’, which is based in the Canary Islands. The attacker initially established himself in ‘Las Palmas B’, where he scored 26 goals in 77 appearances. In 2014, Asdrúbal was promoted to the club’s first team and wore the number 9 jersey. Within 12 months, his side earned promotion into Spain’s top tier to play La Liga football. During the 2015-16 campaign, Asdrúbal went on loan to Spanish club ‘CD Leganés’, and again earned promotion to the Spanish La Liga, before returning to his parent club.

The hard-working Spanish striker completed his medical at the Central Coast Mariners Centre of Excellence on Thursday, July 27. He is Mariners’ Coach, Paul Okon’s, 10th recruit of the Hyundai A-League pre-season. Asdrúbal was also greeted by a familiar face in fellow countryman, Alan Baro, whom he played against when Baro was with SD Ponferradina, between 2013 and 2015. Asdrúbal is known for his goal-scoring ability, which was highlighted by a bicycle kick he scored in the 2014 Copa Del Ray against CD Numancia, to equalise just before half time. The Spanish marksman said he was excited to get started in the Hyundai A-League and is motivated to contribute in the Mariner’s front third. “I am really happy to be here playing for the Central Coast Mariners,” Asdrúbal said.

“This is a really exciting opportunity for me, I’ve studied a lot about Australia, it seems like a beautiful country,” he said. “I’ve also seen Central Coast Stadium, which looks fantastic. “The Hyundai A-League is a good competition, it’s a great opportunity for me to establish myself as an important player, and my decision to come here is based purely on football, but I’m sure this will be a beautiful place to live with my family. “Obviously, scoring goals is fantastic, and it’s my number one objective, but more importantly, what I am all about is work rate.

“I want to contribute to the whole team; my work rate is something that the fans will see a lot of and my never-give-up attitude. “If goals follow from that, then that’s the bonus. “Coming from arguably the best league in the world, there’s a difference between the two leagues’ reputations, but from what I’ve seen, the Hyundai A-League is of high quality and the players are in great physical shape. “I’m sure this will prove a challenge for me, but hopefully, I can draw on the experience having played against superstars in Spain, most importantly, nothing changes.

“I hold the same respect for the league here as I did in Spain. “The work rate I will put in won’t be any different, I want to set an example for the younger players in the way I train,” Asdrúbal said. Paul Okon said he was delighted to secure the services of a proven Spanish goal scorer and hinted that there may be more signings to follow. “We’ve waited patiently to fi ll this position, we’ve looked at a lot of strikers and we wanted to make sure we took our time to find the right ‘9’ to complement the way we play, and we are sure that we’ve done that,” Mr Okon said.

“This is an area we knew we needed to strengthen, and we strongly believe that we’ve got that right balance between experienced players in important positions, with young players who are going to develop even more by having that experience around them, so it’s really exciting times. “He is 26-years-old, which is still quite young, but he has La Liga experience, his pedigree is good and he has played in some very good teams. “The way he scores goals has really i spainmpressed us and it fi ts into the way we play. “His work ethic is very good, everyone that we spoke to when we were doing our research all spoke very highly of him as a top professional. “In the end, it wasn’t a diffi cult choice, but we wanted to make sure we took our time to be 100 percent certain. “We have another spot on our roster and again we are looking at our options.

“We will probably wait until the end of pre-season to further understand which areas we may need to strengthen, but for the time being, we are content with the numbers and what we’re going to be working with. “We have Visa positions available and are defi nitely keen to utilise them if it will add value to our squad,” Mr Okon said. To date, the Paul Okonshaped Central Coast Mariners’ A-League 2017-18 Squad includes: goalkeepers, Tom Glover, Ben Kennedy and Adam Pearce; defenders, Harry Ascroft, Alan Baro, Antony Golec, Jake McGing, Josh Rose, Storm Roux and Kye Rowles; midfi elders, Adam Berry, Daniel De Silva, Tom Hiariej, Blake Powell and Liam Rose; and, attackers, Asdrúbal, Kwabena Appiah, Josh Bingham, Trent Buhagiar, Andrew Hoole, and Connor Pain.

Source: Media release, Jul 28 Tyson Scott, Central Coast Mariners