Words: ACFC Media
Tuesday 26 September 2017
Auckland City FC have signed three players from the Ole Academy in Wellington for the new campaign.
Dalton Wilkins, Owen Parker-Price and Callum McCowatt signed for the Navy Blues as coach Ramon Tribulietx looks to refreshen his squad for the ISPS Handa Premiership season.
Parker-Price and McCowatt are both New Zealand age-group internationals with the latter part of the side that played at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in Korea earlier this year.
"We have a close relationship with the Ole Academy and the players mentor Declan Edge. We also have a very similar playing philosophy and model so we're very happy to bring Owen, Dalton and Callum to the club.
"They're all very good players technically and their understanding of the game is excellent. They all have a very professional attitude which is key for us and I'm sure everyone will benefit from their time with Auckland City FC.
"I believe we can help the boys mature their football and the fact their football DNA matches ours means we can see them fitting in very quickly," Tribulietx said.
McCowatt, who plays in midfield, starred for Western Suburbs during the winter season just gone and Team Wellington's youth side last summer.
Wilkins, also a Team Wellington youth player, is a left sided player capable of playing as a fullback or wide midfielder.
All three players started Saturday's Fullers Festival of Football friendly match with Hamilton Wanderers, a game the Navy Blues won 5-2, with McCowatt bagging a nine minute hat-trick, while Parker-Price and Wilkins were both outstanding in midfield and left-back positions.
McCowatt said: "Its great to be at Auckland City FC, everyone has been very welcoming and working with Ramon is great.
"Its a step up from the Ole Academy and working with Declan Edge is good. We can't wait to get started with Auckland City FC and do our best."
Goalkeeper Conor Tracey is also training with the club after a spell with Three Kings United.
The 20-year-old former Maclean's College student spent two years with Queens Park Rangers and has played for the Junior Navy Blues at National Youth League level.
"Conor's case is a bit different to the others - he has trained with us in the past and is a player we know very well.
"Conor is a good goalkeeper that also fits our specific style of play, he has very good feet and with time and dedication we believe he can become a very good goalkeeper," he said.
The Navy Blues third pre-season match of the season is a friendly with Canterbury United on Sunday 1 October 2017 at 3 Normanby Road, Auckland Grammar.
The match kicks off at 12.30pm.
Sunday 1 October 2017
Auckland City FC v Canterbury United
3 Normanby Road, Auckland Grammar
v Wellington Olympic, 11 March 2023, KO: TBC