Melbourne City FC can announce it has signed Foxtel National Youth League (NYL) graduate Hernan Espindola and defender Callum Richardson on short-term contracts ahead of the Hyundai A-League 2015/16 Season.
Espindola joins the first-team after excelling for the Club’s NYL squad and has already impressed at senior level during pre-season, scoring in pre-season friendly matches against Adelaide United and Oakleigh Cannons.
A crafty and inventive attacker, the 20-year-old has been rewarded with an opportunity at senior level after maturing over the past three seasons in the Club’s youth system.
A former under-17 international for Australia and a key player in the Club’s Foxtel National Youth League title-winning campaign last season, Espindola signs as cover for injured forward James Brown.
Meanwhile, Richardson, 19, joins from Burnley has featured for the Club in its last three pre-season fixtures as a trialist, impressing Head Coach John van’t Schip since joining the first-team squad in Darwin in August.
Richardson trained with van’t Schip’s side in Darwin and featured in the Club’s match against Adelaide United, with his attitude and performance earning an extended trial in Melbourne, which included matches against North Geelong Warriors and Oakleigh Cannons.
Comfortable on the ball and possessing a strong physical presence, Richardson will provide additional cover in defence, after returning to Australia following a spell with English Championship side Burnley.
Head Coach John van’t Schip said: “It’s great to be able to give Hernan and Callum the chance with the first team and we believe they possess the right attributes to help our A-League team.
“Both players have spent time during the pre-season, have been working hard and deserve their opportunity.
“Hernan especially is familiar with the way we play having been part of the Club’s youth system for three seasons now, while Callum has integrated well into the first-team squad since joining us in August.”
The Club can also confirm that young striker Marc Marino faces an extended period on the sidelines after undergoing surgery on his MCL (medial collateral ligament) in his knee in a recent pre-season match against North Geelong Warriors.