Jerrad Tyson has a good chance at winning a contract at fledging A-League club Western Sydney Wanderers, according to the goalkeeper's former coach John Gorza. Tyson, 22, has joined the Wanderers on trial in a bid to become the club's second goalkeeper, behind veteran Ante Covic. The former Australia youth international is uncontracted after the demise of Gold Coast United, and Gorza - goalkeeping coaching for the now-defunct club's final days in the A-League - believes Tyson would be a good fit for the Wanderers. "He's clearly proven he's up to that standard... I think within a week or so they'll make a decision," Gorza told The Satellite. "I think he's highly regarded by the coaching staff there."
The Wanderers, meanwhile, have announced their first-ever pre-season matches ahead of the 2012-13 A-League season. Tony Popovic's men will play in the club's strip for the first time on July 25, when they meet Nepean FC at Cook Park in St Marys. They then face Blacktown City on August 8 at Lily Homes Stadium in Blacktown. "It is very exciting to be able to play our first ever matches as Western Sydney Wanderers and to play them in areas the team grew from is very important," Popovic said via club statement. "We are still busy in the process of trialing and signing players and these matches will be a great chance to test out potential players in our system."
FC Utrecht left-back Michael Zullo will miss the start of the 2012-13 Eredivisie campaign after re-injuring his groin. The Australia international battled the injury last campaign, and made just 15 league appearances after failing to regain his first-team position. Now the former Brisbane Roar player faces another battle, having to spend six weeks on the sidelines as part of his recovery. "We have a training program for Michael now to overcome his injury once and for all," Utrecht doctor Niels Wijne told the club's website. "It is important now he recovers well."
Lucas Pantelis' long-awaited debut for the Wellington Phoenix appears as if it must wait until 2013. The winger joined the Phoenix from Adelaide United before the 2011-12 A-League season, but ruptured his ACL in pre-season and has now had his recovery stymied by a severe infection to his knee. The 30-year-old continues to face an uncertain road ahead as a consequence. "He's going to see the surgeon at the end of the month and we'll make a call then to see how long his rehab is going to be," Phoenix physio Wayne Roberts told The Dominion Post. "He's still on antibiotics and he will be for a long time, a few months yet. He definitely won't be ready for the start of the season. It'll be January at the earliest."
Former Sydney FC striker Juho Makela continues to be among the goals since returning to Finnish Veikkausliiga champions HJK. The 29-year-old was released by the Sky Blues in April after an unspectacular season-and-a-half stint at the A-League club, scoring just three goals in 16 appearances and failing to persuade then-coach Vitezslav Lavicka of his worth. But the former Hearts and Finland international forward has wasted little time finding his feet in his fourth career spell at HJK, with a hat-trick in the club's 7-0 thumping of Iceland minnows KR in Champions League qualifying on Tuesday taking his tally to nine in since returning.