Australian youth international Tando Velaphi has agreed to a new two-year contract with Perth Glory. The 21-year old goalkeeper realised a dream by joining his home town club two seasons ago and is keen to return Glory to the pinnacle of football in Australia.
"The club definitely has a bright future and there is a lot more to achieve here and I want to be around during that period," Velaphi said.
"I grew up supporting the Glory and to be part of it has been fantastic and I'm looking forward to continuing to develop my game and contributing to the success of the club into the future."
Coach David Mitchell said Velaphi's signature is a significant step for Perth that will provide a foundation from which the club can build a successful team.
"It's great to have Tando at the club for another two years. He is one of the young goalkeepers in the league that has produced and is gaining more and more confidence as the weeks go by," said Mitchell.
"I've always been of the opinion that you build from the back so we've secured a great young goalkeeper and now we look across the defence, midfield and up front as we retain and recruit players for success in the years ahead."
Velaphi said the decision to extend Mitchell's contract for two more seasons gave the club stability and direction.
"We have a great coaching team at the club that is stable and can offer plenty to the team. Willie (McNally) is a great 'keeper coach and I'm learning a lot while Mitch has put his faith in me and I want to reward that," Velaphi said.
"It's important for the club to have a stable base and I have seen some great signs at training and during games that indicate we are on the right path to take the club back to the levels we were at during the NSL."
Although he's started in Glory's past five matches, Velaphi is well aware that to remain between the posts he must continue to perform with the experienced pair of Frank Juric and Jason Petkovic nipping at his heels.
"I've got a lot to improve on and work on but I'm enjoying my opportunity to play and I'll push myself to get better and I know the other guys are doing the same and that will only benefit the team," said Velaphi.
"I aspire to play at the highest level I can and there is no better place to be developing my game than here in Australia with the Glory."