Dutch utility Bas van den Brink is expected to become Perth Glory’s latest capture after contract negotiations for a return to Gold Coast United broke down.
Back in Australia after a disastrous switch to K-League outfit Busan l’Park saw him depart after just two months, the blond destroyer – equally at home at the back or in a screening midfield role – has already been approached by Glory, with the club’s chief executive Paul Kelly telling The World Game: “Of course we are interested in Bas, he is a quality player.
“There may be something to announce within a week or so.”
It’s understood that 28-year-old van den Brink’s first preference was to be reunited with Gold Coast, for whom he played 50 games before his departure last March.
But the club which has shed the cream of its talent in a massive downsizing exercise after coming within a game of the 2010-2011 A-League grand final, dithered too long on coming up with a contract.
Perth was quick to pounce with Kelly keen to reintroduce van den Brink to his former club mate Shane Smeltz along with fellow new arrivals Travis Dodd, Dean Heffernan, Danny Vukovic, Evan Berger and Australian Under-17s whizkid Jesse Makarounis.
“We feel we have put together a very competitive squad for the new season (which begins with the visit of Adelaide United to nib Stadium on October 9).
“And having a player of the calibre of Bas in the side would be an asset for us. He was very impressive during his two seasons with Gold Coast and he’d be a plus for any A-League side.”
Van den Brink’s move to Busan turned out to be a bad Korea move as an ankle injury, picked up in his final United game against Brisbane Roar, plagued him from the outset, with not enough time given for him to recover.
He was rushed straight into the starting line up and his performances, by his own admission, suffered.
With van den Brink in the bag, Glory is also expecting to seal the return of veteran marksman Robbie Fowler, who has been given until August to put pen to paper on a new one-year deal.
“We are very hopeful that he will be here next season,” Kelly said.
“He has a lot to give on and off the pitch still at the age of 36 and can be a mentor for our younger players.”
Kelly admits that Glory, which finished third bottom last season, was embarrassing, adding: “That’s the only way to describe us and we want to bring the consistency and flair back to the team and start giving the fans the entertainment value they deserve. We are confident we have the tea to do that.”
Glory has been seeking to forge links in Asia and South America to fascilitate future transfers from those continents and remains committed to bringing a marquee club to Australia for an exclusive showpiece game in 2012 after its looming clash with Celtic at nib Stadium on July 12.
“We are looking at bringing the very best here from across the world to games that will excite our fans,” Kelly said.
Defending A-League champion Central Coast Mariners remains on course for back-to-back glory after beating Adelaide United 1-0 in Saturday night's elimination final.