Highly-touted teenage defender Phillip Cancar has become coach Carl Robinson’s fourth signing since taking charge at Western Sydney Wanderers.
Cancar, 19, - who was part of Sydney FC’s Academy set-up - has been making waves in Croatia with second-tier table-toppers NK Hrvatski Dragovoljac.
But with the Prva HNL in a stop-start flux as a result of coronavirus lockdowns, the Young Socceroos prospect has opted to return home to the relative stability and continuity of the A-League.
Former Celtic Academy midfielder Leo Mazis, 20, is meanwhile trialling with Wanderers after spending two years at Parkhead under Brendan Rodgers’ reign.
The kid from Canberra was unable to crack a senior squad spot for the Hoops and joined Italian Serie C side Triestina back in February, only for his career to also be sent into a spin by COVID-19 chaos.
He’s been training with Wanderers for the past seven days, but no decision has yet been reached on whether he’ll be offered a contract.
Illawarra-raised Cancar is expected back in Australia within a week, after initially leaving the Sky Blues at just 16 to join Lokomotiva, also in Croatia’s Prva HNL.
It’s understood he had interest from Melbourne Victory and A-League newcomers Macarthur FC before opting for Wanderers.
Robinson is looking to give homegrown youngsters the chance to shine next season, with the recent captures of defensive midfielder Anthony Lesiotis, 20, from Melbourne Victory and 22-year-old goalkeeper Daniel Margush from Perth Glory exemplifying that strategy.
Bucking the trend was last week’s high-profile signing of 33-year-old Scotland international Graham Dorrans.
Wanderers were contacted for comment.