City’s rebuild continues with signing of ‘trio of the brightest young talents in Australia’

Melbourne City and their squad rebuild for the 2023-24 Isuzu UTE A-League season is gathering pace following the arrival of Alessandro Lopane, Patrick Beach and Zane Schreiber.

City have wasted little time after losing June’s Grand Final to Central Coast Mariners, the record three-time reigning premiers bringing in Serie A star Tolgay Arslan and now a “trio of the brightest young talents in Australia”.

The Grand Finalists are in the midst of a rebuild, with Aiden O’Neill (Standard Liege), Jordan Bos (Westerlo), Thomas Glover, Thomas Lam and Richard van der Venne all departing for Europe, while Marco Tilio has also been tipped to test himself abroad.

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Regarded as one of the best young goalkeepers in the country, Beach arrives from the Mariners and their NPL NSW side on a three-year deal until 2025-26, while midfielder Schreiber has also penned the same contract following his arrival via Sydney FC’s youth side.

Former Western Sydney Wanderers attacking midfielder Lopane joins on a two-year contract with the option to extend for a further year.

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“We are always searching for the best young talent in Australia, whether that be from our
Academy or interstate,” said City’s director of football Michael Petrillo.

Lopane was available after terminating his Wanderers contract to pursue other opportunities.

The 19-year-old joined the club as a 12-year-old and worked his way up through the ranks in the Wanderers Academy – starting in Under 13s before eventually making his A-Leagues debut for the senior side in November 2021 against Macarthur FC.

He went on to make 19 league appearances, including seven this season and has represented Australia at Under-17 and Under-23 level.

“Alessandro is a player we have targeted for a while now, so we are very happy he’s decided to
join us,” said Petrillo. “He has great technical ability, sees the next pass very well and has an attacking mindset that suits the City style of play.

“He will have every opportunity to press his claims with a good preseason leading into the AFC Champions League Group Stage fixtures.”

Beach has impressed with the Mariners at NPL level this season, though the 20-year-old is yet to make his senior debut.

“We consider Patrick to be one of the best young keepers in the country,” Petrillo said.

“He is a courageous keeper who is good with his feet, has great anticipation and is a strong shot-stopper.”

As for Schreiber, he was part of Australia’s Under-18 side – alongside City youngsters Emin Durakovic, Max Caputo, Sebastian Esposito and Harry Shillington – that featured at the FPF Sub-18 Tournament in Portugal.

The 18-year-old, who has amassed 13 NPLM NSW appearances this season but is yet to appear at A-League Men level, started two games and scored against Portugal.

“Zane is a typical #6 in our system. His attitude, ability to get around the pitch and passing range stood out and we see enormous potential for him to grow as a key midfielder of the future,” he added.