Bite-sized news for you to chew over - Glory settles on coaching staff, Elrich seeks to follow in his brother's footsteps and much, much more
Former Rangers defender Stuart Munro will stay on as Perth Glory coach Ian Ferguson's senior assistant for a third season. The losing A-League grand finalists are also welcoming former Newcastle Jets assistant Mark Jones to their coaching staff. Jones, a former Australia Under 20 international, has joined as an assistant, with Ferguson thrilled to have the duo locked in for season 2012-13. Former South Melbourne and Carlton SC coach Munro had been in the running for the No.2 position at Melbourne Heart, before re-committing to the Glory. "We are delighted to have them both on board," Ferguson said. "I'm really pleased Stuart is with the club again and Mark will bring great experience having coached in the A-League [as an assistant] and the New South Wales Institute of Sport."
Tarek Elrich said the chance to follow in his brother's footsteps made signing for the Western Sydney Wanderers an easy decision. Elrich was one of three players - along with Aaron Mooy and Kwabena Appiah-Kubi - to become the new A-League club's first signings. The former Newcastle Jet returns to the region in which he grew up, and has fond memories of watching elder brother and former Australia international Ahmad Elrich play in the area. "I remember the days when I used to wear my brother’s No.21 jersey and be his biggest fan out at Parramatta Stadium every second week... My brother once told me if [Parramatta] Power still existed he would have signed his life away and never gone overseas," Elrich told the A-League's website. "He has to repay the favour and wear my jersey now and I'm sure he will… Having the club in the Western Sydney region was a big thing and there is no bigger honour than playing for your home town, and being a foundation player I am going to experience the highs and lows of this club."
Newcastle Jets forward Adam Taggart is relishing the opportunity to learn under new team-mates Michael Bridges and Ryan Griffiths. Taggart is one of several new signings for the club, and made a positive start by scoring two goals in the space of a few minutes in his side's 3-1 win over the Northern New South Wales Football League outfit Broadmeadow Magic on Wednesday. He will battle for a spot up front in Gary van Egmond's starting XI with former Leeds United striker Bridges and classy ex-Beijing Guoan forward Griffiths, but is relishing working alongside the duo. "With people like Bridgey and Griffo playing alongside you, you're always going to have chances," Taggart told the club's website. "The thought process and movement behind everything is already there and it's easier for someone like me to come into that. You can sort of expect what you're going to do with their movement and it's really good to play up front with them."
Former Wellington Phoenix and Brisbane Roar forward Kostas Barbarouses has joined Greek Super League powerhouse Panathinaikos on loan for the 2012-13 season. The 22-year-old forward moved from newly promoted Russian Premier League club Alania Vladikavkaz, who bought him for AU$600,000 from the Roar in July 2011. The New Zealand international made 13 appearances and scored two goals in Alania's 2011-12 National League campaign, in which they finished second and won a place in Russia's top flight. He will be part of New Zealand's 2012 London Olympic squad, and will then link up with Panathinaikos.