Abbas completes Phoenix roster

23 August 2017 18:49:56 GMTPlus10

Former Newcastle Jets and Sydney FC star Ali Abbas is back in the A-League after signing for Wellington Phoenix.

The left-sided player, who previously had stints with Newcastle Jets and Sydney FC, has joined the Phoenix as an injury replacement player for Louis Fenton.

Abbas has made 128 A-League appearances across his spells with the Jets and the Sky Blues.

He spent last season in Korea with Pohang Steelers, and rejected several offers to play in his native Iraq before agreeing terms with Wellington.

Abbas will provide depth and versatility to the squad with his ability to play in any position down the left flank.

He will take the place of the oft-injured Fenton, who is likely to spend next season at national league level before re-joining the Phoenix on a one-year deal from next September.

Wellington assistant coach Rado Vidosic said the club were pleased to have signed a player with experience of both the A-League and the Asian Champions League.

He added: "As a left-footed player he brings a lot of balance to the team and also competition on the left-handed side - at fullback, as a midfielder and a winger."

Abbas' signing will complete the roster of coach Darije Kalezic ahead of his first season in charge.

Kalezic said: "It hasn't always been possible in the past to attract top-quality Australian players to join us here at Wellington - that has changed."

He said he was pleased to be linking up again with Vidosic, who he worked with at Sydney FC.

"He's very tactical, and structured, he makes you understand the roles you play, so the chance to work again with him, and of course to learn from Darije, was very exciting," added Abbas.

The Phoenix areĀ 11/8 to win their first game of the league season against Adelaide, who are 7/4.

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