Central Coast Mariners announce Kuol return: Full details

Guess who’s back, back again? Alou Kuol is back in Gosford after re-joining Isuzu UTE A-League champions Central Coast Mariners on a three-year deal.

More than two years on from his big move to German giants Stuttgart having burst onto the scene with Central Coast, the Olyroo and older brother of Newcastle United’s Socceroo sensation Garang returns to the Mariners ahead of the 2023-24 season.

Despite interest from elsewhere, he will help fill the void left by Jason Cummings’ transfer to the Indian Super League.

“It is great to be back on the Coast and I am just really excited for the upcoming season. Being around the boys again and back with Monty (Nick Montgomery) and Serg (Sergio Raimundo) for the next three years, I’m excited for what is in store for us,” Alou Kuol said.

“Being given the chance to come home and play in front of my family and for coaches that I know very well is amazing. I know what they want from me and I think they will get the best out of me.

“It is an amazing feeling to come back and help defend the colours of the Coast, the Yellow and Navy. I’ll do everything that I can for this club.”

INS AND OUTS: Isuzu UTE A-League 2023-24 Transfer Centre

The 22-year-old forward and Olyroo, who signed a four-year contract at Stuttgart in 2021, made his Bundesliga debut for the five-time German champions in January.

He earned one senior appearance for Stuttgart in 2022-23, while he did not score a goal in 14 matches for the second team, having found the back of the net seven times in 18 games the season prior.

Alou Kuol returns to Central Coast on the back of Sam Silvera’s record-breaking move to Stuttgart in England’s EFL Championship.

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“We are absolutely delighted to bring Alou back to the club. To replace Jason’s goal threat with a young Australian striker was a massive challenge and Alou was always our number one target. We have full belief in his ability, which he has already proven before leaving for Europe’s elite,” said head coach Nick Montgomery.

“I have to commend Stuttgart throughout our discussions and thank them for agreeing to
the transfer on good faith that the Mariners is the best place for Alou to reach his
undoubted potential for both parties to benefit.

“Sergio and I scouted Alou as a raw 17-year-old and his rise was quite incredible. Some moves don’t always work out, but Alou will have learnt some valuable lessons and experiences that have given him the platform to become one of Australia’s top strikers and push for the Socceroos one day in the near future.

“Alou had a lot of interest and offers but he knows how much the Coast loves him. It’s the perfect environment for him to kickstart his career again and follow the likes of Sammy (Silvera) and Nectar (Triantis) and continue the trend of our philosophy at the club.”

Kuol – who earned a Puskas Award nomination for his ‘scorpion kick’ goal at the 2022 AFC Under-23 Asian Cup – joined the Mariners youth setup from Victorian NPL outfit Goulburn Valley Suns, the same path as Garang, after a trial in 2019.

Born in Sudan and raised in Australia by South-Sudanese parents, he debuted for the Mariners in an A-League Men loss to Western United in March 2020.

His first A-Leagues goal came in the F3 Derby against Newcastle Jets – the winning strike in a 1-0 victory in December that year.

He departed the Mariners for Germany, having scored seven goals – including a memorable brace against Western United in February 2021 and a brilliant strike away to Adelaide United that same month.

Kuol – part of the Olyroos squad that finished third at Maurice Revello Tournament in France – returns to a Mariners team coming off their first Championship in a decade after they upstaged three-time reigning premiers Melbourne City in last month’s Grand Final.