Former Liverpool legend Robbie Fowler met the Perth media today following his move to local side Glory for the 2010/11 A-League season, and Neil Sherwin looks at the biggest transfer deal of the off season.
Perth Glory’s biggest ever signing touched down at the city’s airport last night where he was greeted by hoards of excited fans, and less than 24 hours later the 35 year old striker was beside new manager David Mitchell for a press conference at ME Bank Stadium.
“I am confident at what I can do, and the (Glory) team had a great season last year – so I am on board and hopefully I can try and better the team and that is the aim,” he said.
“I still consider myself young even though I’m not. I love the game and I want to play for as long as I can.
“I think I have got one, two maybe three years playing – that (coaching) is what I want to do in the end – but I think I have got a few more years before I am up for the coaching.”
Fowler scored nine goals in 24 games for North Queensland Fury, but financial issues at the club meant he was forced to find a new home, and Glory saw off competition from Sydney FC to secure the former England international’s signature.
The marquee signing comes at a great time with soccer in Perth becoming more popular than ever before.
The State Government of Western Australia recently pledged to make $80 million available for a redevelopment of ME Bank Stadium, also home to Super 14 side the Western Force, which will see the capacity increase to 25,000.
“The redevelopment can only assist Perth Glory fulfilling its objective to be the best club in the Hyundai A-League and in Asia,” said Glory owner Tony Sage.
The acquisition of Fowler on a lucrative deal thought to be worth around $600,000 will certainly put bums on seats, and Glory have already reaped the rewards in terms of corporate sponsorship for the coming season.
Glory finished a credible fifth last year and include former Premiership players Andy Todd, Mile Sterjovski and captain Jacob Burns in their squad.
They again hope to host two English top flight sides in July as part of the club’s preseason program having faced both Wolves and Fulham last year.
Ironically enough, Fowler will make his competitive debut against his former club Fury on the opening day of the season at ME Bank Stadium on August 6.
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