Diaz joins the Jacks for 2017

Diaz joins the Jacks for 2017

Posted on November 11, 2016 in 'News'

ECU Joondalup have begun their recruitment for the 2017 PS4NPLWA season by signing defender Nathan Diaz from Champions Perth SC. (Photo – Diaz is welcomed to the club by President Steve Wheatley)

The 25-year-old said he is exciting about the new challenge and helping the club go one better than last season. “I think it will be great move for me, there are a few familiar faces down here and the coaching staff have already welcomed me with open arms so I’m feeling really good about the move,” he said.  “They lost Ryan Lowry and I’m hoping to fill in the space he left and take up the same role, and hopefully I can add some more experience more pace and urgency and quality at the back.”

The decision to leave Dorrien Gardens was a difficult one but Diaz said when he heard ECU was interested in him it was an easy decision. “It was a very difficult decision that I had to make, Perth’s such a great club everyone down there does and outstanding job but it was just one of those decisions that I had to make for myself,” he explained. “I’d spoken to Toughy (David Tough) last season and they were very keen to get me down so they were just following up again obviously losing Ryan was a big loss for them so they were on the hunt for someone to step in and thankfully they picked me and giving my circumstances I wasn’t going to turn the move down I think it will benefit me and the club.”

Tough, who worked with the defender at Wanneroo, said Diaz is a perfect fit to replace former skipper Lowry, who joined A-League side Wellington Phoenix. “I’ve worked with Nathan before and ticks all the boxes of the type player we’re are trying to bring to the club. He is very athletic and has excellent attitude to training,” he said. “He’s a winner, a leader in the pitch and is very good player. He had a great second half of the season with Perth last year but I still think the best is still to come for Nathan. Were delighted he’s committed to the club and I’m sure he’s going to be a big player for us next season.”

Diaz started his football at Heathridge as a youngster, and went onto Sorrento, Wanneroo and then to Bayswater, before heading back to The Roos, where he helped them win the First Division title. He then moved to the NPL with Subiaco before heading to Perth last season. “Winning the league last year with Perth was a tremendous feeling,” he said. “But I’ve come here to do the same, and I’m hoping for a repeat this year at the Jacks.”

He has worked with assistant Coach Tough but he’s looking forward to working with him again, and Dale McCulloch and Steven McGarry. “The club have a great coaching structure with Dale, Steven and Toughy, who is a great character and had a big input on the move,” he explained. “I’m sure when you ask anyone they’d never have a bad thing to say about him. He’s a great coach, really knows his stuff, and looks after all the players, so I’m looking forward to working with him again.”