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How Tomi Juric helped get Markus Babbel to Western Sydney Wanderers

09:36 IST 19/05/2018
Tomi Juric/ Markus Babbel
No longer scoring goals for the club, but Juric is helping them secure coaches

He scored Western Sydney Wanderers Asian Champions League winner in 2014, and now Tomi Juric is continuing to help his former club playing an unexpected part in convincing Markus Babbel to take up the vacant coaching role.

Babbel was unveiled as Josep Gombau's replacement on Saturday, with the former German international defender already boasting a very strong coaching resume.

After stints in the Bundesliga with Stuttgart and Hertha Berlin, the 45-year-old was most recently coaching Luzern in Switzerland, the club Juric now calls home.

The player and coach inevitably discussed the strikers time playing for the red and black, with Juric's glowing description making Babbel's decision to join the club a lot easier.  

"One of the biggest points why I came here to Sydney because Tomi Juric was telling me the crowds are totally crazy," Babbel said.

"And after Switzerland, of course it was a good time there, but the supporters are very quiet and not so many in the stadium. Now I’m really looking forward to good support.

"It was good I was talking to him and now I know a lot."

Babbel has spent his entire playing and coaching career in Europe but is eager to challenge himself in a new continent.

Sitting down with club officials just two weeks ago, the former Liverpool defender made his mind up quickly about joining a club he believes has great ambition. 

"I am very proud and very happy to be here," Babbel said.

"I had really good conversations with the club when they came to visit me in Germany and I could see the fever in their eyes about the vision and what Western Sydney would like to do in the next couple of years. 

"I was thinking about it and talking to friends who know about the Australian league and I said to my wife that I have a good feeling and I'm ready now for a new experience. 

"I'm looking forward and I would like to say thank you to the club for trusting in me and I will give 100% towards our vision."