Adelaide City FC has confirmed it’s player development role in Australian football, the club now an important feeder for Australia’s premier football clubs in the Hyundai A-League, after dynamic midfielder, Joel Allwright’s move to midcoast NSW A-League franchise Newcastle Jets was locked in overnight.
Allwright becomes the eighth Adelaide City FC player to move to an A-League club in as many months following Nikola Mileusnic’s signing to the reigning A-League Champions, Adelaide United; Josh Mori’s move to Adelaide United’s Youth Team (where he is now captain); and five women to the Reds 2016/2017 W-League outfit, – Kljajic, Campagnale, Scalzi, Ladas and Willacy.
Club Chairman, Alf Ianniello, congratulated Allwright on the move and highlighted the value of quality coaching. “Here at City, we have built a culture of player development as priority. Joel has always been a great player, but under the continued guidance of our 1st Grade coach Damian Mori, his capability has continued to progress. Like Nikola Mileusnic, Joel’s move to an A-League team is combined testament to our coaching staff, team and the player.”
The club’s Junior Development Manager, Rick Cerracchio, re-iterated the club’s development focus; “Adelaide City FC has a strong sense of community responsibility to support children into the sport, help them enjoy the game and build their skills to be the best they can be. Our players at the junior level continue to progress, with many advancing to state based age squads or remaining at the club to grow and develop under our technical directors and extensive coaching group.”
Allwright, the 2016 Adelaide City FC Player of the Year, will join the mid-table A-League outfit on a loan deal and be free to return to the Black and Whites at the end of the current A-League season. The agreement comes about as the Jets look to bolster their squad moving into the second half of the season.
He may however return to Adelaide sooner. The Jets are scheduled to meet Adelaide United at Coopers Stadium on Friday 17 February 2017 in their Round 21 fixture and if selected, will make the return to the City of Churches for the match.
The game could see the re-unification on the park of two of the stars of the 2016 SA PS4 NPL Premiers if Nicola Mileusnic is also selected for United, but this time in opposition colours.
The move is fitting recognition and reward for Allwright, a player who has given much to the game and Adelaide City. An Australian Institute of Sport graduate, he previously tasted A-League with Adelaide United several years ago as part of their youth setup. The 178cm midfielder has a high workrate, silky ball skills and can be devastating in attack, attributes which will no doubt benefit Newcastle Jets as it aims to make the A-League finals in 2017.