Melbourne City FC has finalised a five-player leadership group ahead of the Hyundai A-League season.
Tim Cahill, 37, has been appointed ‘Club captain’ and Michael Jakobsen, 31, team captain, with the defender to wear the armband in City’s season opener against Brisbane Roar this Friday night. Jakobsen represented City at the A-League's season launch on Tuesday morning at Port Melbourne Soccer Club alongside representatives of the other nine A-League clubs.
The group will comprise all-time Socceroos top goal scorer Cahill, Danish centre-back Jakobsen, two-time A-League Championship goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic, defensive midfielder Osama Malik and 21-year-old attacking midfielder Stefan Mauk.
Appointed by Head Coach Warren Joyce, a player from each key on-field positional group – goalkeeper, defence, midfield and attack – has been selected.
“I’m an advocate for having multiple leaders, not just one captain, who can share responsibilities and keep everyone in the team accountable,” Joyce said.
“Each player has been selected as we believe them to be natural leaders. Tim inspires our players in his actions and through his experience; he’s worn the armband for Everton and for his country at the highest level and we expect him to continue to represent City with great passion to motivate our players.
“Eugene’s achieved everything there is to achieve in Australian domestic football and his resume speaks for itself. He’s a great character who lifts everyone around him, but also provides expert tuition to our other young defensive players.
“In Michael we have a player with ingrained leadership qualities, Osama is a fantastic character and player we see great potential in developing, while Stef is an intelligent player, who, even though still young, has matured through his recent experience in Europe.”
Bruno Fornaroli, captain last season, will be involved in the group upon his return to the first team.
“Bruno’s will no doubt play a part in this group at some point during the season, but his sole focus now is on working with our medical team on his rehabilitation.”