A-League preview 2010/11: Gold Coast United

The glitter strip club have stabilised well going into their sophomore year.

The glitter strip club have stabilised well going into their sophomore year.

No enormous losses and a few smart ins after a third-placed finish will have Gold Coast United right in and about the top few teams in 2010/11.

A few weeks ago, this would have been completely different as star striker Shane Smeltz was set to join Chinese club Shandong Luneng, but he decided to renege on that contract and is now back on the Gold Coast preparing for another A-League season.

If he was to leave, a large chunk of scoring power would have left the club, placing coach Miron Bleiberg in a tough position with a desperate need to sign a new striker so close to the season but it seems to have worked out well and Smeltz will be there on the frontline, working hard as usual.

Former Manchester United defender John Curtis is a solid signing and will add extra depth to a back third already containing Michael Thwaite, Bas van den Brink and Kristian Rees. Curtis’ signing may allow Thwaite to play a more advanced role as he did towards the end of last season.

Add to that marquee midfielder and Australian international Jason Culina and once again you have a very formidable outfit capable of featuring in the finals.

Last season: 3rd
tribalfootball’s Prediction: 4th

Arrivals: Glen Moss (Melbourne Victory), John Curtis (Northampton), Golgol Mebrahtu (GCU NYC), Jerrad Tyson (GCU NYC)

Departures: Charlie Miller (released), Richard Greer (released), Jess Vanstrattan (Central Coast)

Biggest signing: John Curtis

Biggest loss: Jess Vanstrattan

Key men: Shane Smeltz, Jason Culina, Michael Thwaite, Joel Porter

Team list

Goalkeepers

Scott Higgins
Glen Moss
Jerrad Tyson

Defenders

Anderson
John Curtis
Dino Djulbic
Daniel Piorkowski
Kristian Rees
Michael Thwaite
Adama Traore
Bas van den Brink

Midfielders

Robson
James Brown
Zenon Caravella
Jason Culina
Steve Fitzsimmons
Matthew Osman
Steve Pantelidis

Forwards

Andrew Barisic
Golgol Mebrahtu
Tahj Minniecon
Joel Porter
Shane Smeltz

Coach

Miron Bleiberg

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