English midfielder Rodgers joins ECU

English midfielder Rodgers joins ECU

Posted on June 20, 2014 in 'News'

ECU Joondalup have bolstered their squad by signing UK midfielder Craig Rodgers. The 31-year-old, who was at Altrincham in the Conference Premier Division last season, has settled in well at the club and is looking forward to his debut on Saturday, if selected.

“I’ve settled in well, and there’s a good group of lads at the club, and they’ve all made me feel welcome, which always helps you settle in at a new club,” Rodgers said.

The move to WA came quickly but he’s glad he made the decision to head down under. “I’ve got a few friends out here, which moved over from the UK, and they’ve told me nothing but good things about the place,” Rodgers explained.

“I was turning 31 in march, so it was my last chance to apply for a working visa, so I thought I’d give it a go, and I’m looking forward to the challenge.”

Rodgers joined training last week and watched from the stands when ECU beat Perth Glory 2-0, to move to sixth on the table and he’s looking forward to getting on the park. “I watched the game against Perth Glory on Saturday and I thought we thoroughly deserved the three points, and controlled the game,” he said.

“I can see that there is a confidence and togetherness in the squad and that can only be a good thing, and I’m looking forward to be part of it.”

Rodgers CV is impressive, and has played many years in the UK. “I started my playing career at Chester City, I completed an football apprenticeship there, then moved on to the league of Wales and played for Caernarfon & TNS (The New Saints), from there I went to Colwyn Bay,” explained Rodgers.

“After two seasons at Colwyn Bay, I signed for AFC Telford United, and stayed there for six seasons, playing in the English Conference North and the Conference Premier.

“I played for Altrincham FC in the Conference North for the last two seasons, and last season we won the playoffs and promotion to the Conference Premier, which was a highlight for me, as well the winning playoffs with Telford in 2011, and getting into the top tier of non-league football .”

The midfielder has been impressed with ECU Coach Dale McCulloch and is looking forward to working with him. ‘I’ve only had a few sessions with the lads but Dale is a good coach. He keeps everything sharp in the training sessions, and they are bright,” Rodgers said.

“He keeps us on our toes, but makes it enjoyable too. I can see he knows his stuff, and I’m enjoying working with him.”

McCulloch believes the signing of Rodgers is a great coup for the club, and he added depth to the squad. “The signing of Carl is fantastic for our club,” McCulloch said. “He brings a vast amount of experience to our midfield after a long career in UK football. He has settled in really well with the lads and we hope he will be an important member of our squad as we push for the end of season finals.”

Rodgers is in the squad for Saturday’s home game against Floreat Athena (3pm), and is in line to make his NPL-WA debut.