With the Gold Cosat United recently decimated by injury and suspension, Miron Bleiberg has drafted in defensive cover with the signing of former Bolton Wanderers defender Wayne Buchanan on a short-term contract.
The 27-year-old Northern Irishman, who represented his country at every level from under 15 to under 23, will replace injured Brazilian midfielder, Robson, who will need several weeks to recover from his knee injury.
After arriving in Australia in May, Buchanan trained with Gold Coast United and played in several local trial games, but could not be offered a deal due to United having a full quota of visa players.
Buchanan spent six years with IFA Premiership (Northern Ireland) side Lisburn Distillery after a four-year spell with Bolton Wanderers (1998-2002), with whom he made one first team appearance in an FA Cup tie away at Tottenham.
A former international team-mate of Sydney FC’s Terry McFlynn, the 189cm stopper said he was overjoyed to have finally made the breakthrough into the A-League, and intends to make the most of his short-term deal.
“I wanted the challenge of coming over here to try and get a deal in the A-League and I couldn’t be happier to be given the chance at Gold Coast United,” Buchanan said.
“This is what I came here for and it gives me the opportunity to show what I can do and push on to try and cement a full-time contract.
“To come to a side that is doing so well is a bonus and having trained with the club in pre-season I know quite a few of the lads, which is a big help.
“I’m not looking too far ahead and just want to do my best.”
While unlikely to throw him straight into this weekend’s clash with Central Coast Mariners, Gold Coast United Head Coach, Miron Bleiberg, said once Buchanan’s fitness is up to speed he will be a useful acquisition for the club.
“He trained with us at the beginning of the year and we kept in touch. I told him I would be happy to bring him in if the opportunity arose, which it now has,” Bleiberg said.
“He is a strong, reliable centre-back who is a good organiser. We need additional players at the moment and he fits the bill for us.
“Wayne has a good pedigree and I think he can go well in the A-League.”
Although not considered for first team duty this week, Buchanan is likely to feature in the Gold Coast United Youth Team on Sunday when they take on the Central Coast Mariners.
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