Socceroos defender Josh Risdon has become Western Melbourne's first Australian signing after inking a 2-year-deal with the A-League expansion club
Risdon joins Greek international and marquee signing Panigiotis Kone as the burgeoning club's first two signings as they build towards entering the competition for the 2019/20 season.
The 26-year-old was a member of Graham Arnold's Socceroos squad but injury cost him his starting position to Sydney FC flyer Rhyan Grant.
Western Melbourne football director and former Socceroo Steve Horvat said that Risdon was exactly the type of player the club looked to attract.
“We’re absolutely thrilled to bring Josh into the Western Melbourne family and we look to him being a leader and mentor to some of the younger players that will be joining the squad,” Horvat said.
“Attracting a talented current Socceroo shows our ambition and our commitment to building a competitive squad from the first season that our fans can be proud of.”
“Josh is an attacking defender with a fantastic work ethic who we know our fans will love watching. He has an excellent character and we know he’ll fit in with our club very well on and off the park.”
The Perth product made his A-League debut with Perth Glory in 2010 before going on to play 142 games for the club.
In 2017 Risdon joined Western Sydney Wanderers.
The full-back said the club's vision was one of the main reasons he signed.
“I’m absolutely stoked to be the first Australian player to join Western Melbourne,” Risdon said.
“With the signing of Panagiotis as the marquee, I can see the club has big ambitions both on the park and off it. With their own boutique stadium being built, which I think is a great idea, the club has an exciting future.
“I’m a hard worker who understands that the fans in the West of Melbourne want players who’ll give absolutely 100% for the shirt. I can’t wait to start doing that.”