By John Kotsiopoulos
It is no secret that there is a lot of untapped talent coming up through the NPL systems. For example look at Jai Ingham. After playing in the 2015 and 2016 VIC NPL League for Hume City, we gained a contract for Melbourne Victory, scoring his first goal for the club against us in November.
Here are our top 5 NSW NPL Stars that we could potentially sign.
5. Dejan Pandurevic – Manly United
Daejan is a very quick winger with immense skill both on and off the ball, and has proved a great asset for Manly United in their chase for the NSW NPL Championship. Pandurevic previously had a stint with the Mariners in 2015, without playing for the first team, and at only 20 years of age is itching to get some more A-League action before hopefully moving overseas.
4. Chris Payne – Sydney United 58
Payne scored the majority of Sydney United’s goals in 2016, winning the NSW NPL Golden boot scoring 22 goals from 25 games. This included an equaliser that sent United into the Grand Final, before going down to Blacktown City.
Payne’s first A-League stint came with the now defunct North Queensland Fury, only scoring 4 goals in the 2010-2011 season, he is looking for redemption if given the chance. With our scoring woes this season, he would be more than suited to the task.
3. Kieren Paull – Manly United
Our only defender on this list, Kieren Paull was no doubt one of Manly United’s stand out players in the 2016 season. As a versatile left and right fullback, Paull would be a great addition to the Wanderers struggling defence, adding some much needed quality depth.
2. Danny Choi – Blacktown City
When you hear Danny Choi’s name, the first thing you think of is the spectacular 70 meter goal against Sydney United in the Westfield FFA Cup. Choi has shown his skill in the NSW NPL, with his face pace and skills on the ball, he is a great player to have out on the wings.
Choi has recently been released from his injury replacement contract with Adelaide United, and would fit in well in our line up. Perhaps as a replacement for Sotirio?
1. Panni Nikas – Sydney United 58
Our second Sydney United player on the list and with good reason. They did win the NSW NPL Premiership this year, with his role being crucial to their success.
He boasts experience in the A-League already, 3 first team games for Central Coast as well as an impressive Y-League season with them. And also making 19 appearances alongside Payne for North Queensland Fury.
Whilst we don’t have a lot of space for midfielders at the moment, Nikas would be a very talented addition to our squad.