Heffernan Joins Melbourne Heart FC

Melbourne Heart FC has made another key on-field acquisition with the signing of Central Coast and internationally capped defender Dean Heffernan.

Melbourne Heart FC has made another key on-field acquisition with the signing of Central Coast and internationally capped defender Dean Heffernan.

The 29 year-old has signed a multi-year deal to join the Hyundai A-League-s newest football club, bringing additional experience following the signings of fellow internationals Kristian Sarkies and Matt Thompson.

Head coach, John van -t Schip said, "Dean is a modern day defender, with great distribution and an excellent physical presence on the field.

"He is tall, extremely mobile but also technically very sound, which is shown by his ability to move into attack and contribute and create goals."

Heffernan scored eight goals in 23 games from left back in the first Hyundai A-League Season for Central Coast before being loaned to FC Nuremberg in the German Bundesliga.

He returned to the Mariners in 2007 and was named in "FourFourTwo" Magazine's Dream Team for the second time in his career.

Heffernan was also the star in Central Coast's 2009 Asian Champion's League campaign with some stunning individual performances.

His ability to turn defence into attack was rewarded earlier this year with his senior international debut for the Qantas Socceroos in its Asian Cup Qualifier against Indonesia.

Nicknamed "Sonic" for his lightning pace and constant energy, Heffernan may find himself in a different role within van 't Schip's structure.

"While Dean has been used in the past as a left-sided player, our intention is to use him as a central defender," van 't Schip said.

"There are a number of players at the top level who have moved centrally as they matured and become great on-field leaders.

"With his athleticism and power, he is able to compete with strikers of any type and with his technical quality, he is comfortable enough to keep possession and play the ball out of defence, which is the way we want to play.

Heffernan is the third player to sign with Melbourne Heart FC.