Yengi completes move to Portsmouth from Western Sydney Wanderers

Kusini Yengi has signed for League One side Portsmouth for an undisclosed fee from Western Sydney Wanderers, on a two year deal with an option to extend.

Yengi spent one season at the Wanderers after arriving from Adelaide United in July 2022, making 18 appearances and scoring four goals.

The 24-year-old striker forever etched himself into Derby folklore when he scored his first goal for the club in a 1-0 over their arch-rivals Sydney FC last November. He hit the net again against the Sky Blues in a 4-0 victory at Allianz Stadium in March.

He joins his brother Tete in England, who is currently on the books of recently promoted Championship outfit Ipswich Town and spent last season on loan at Northampton in League Two.

The versatile attacker joins a Portsmouth side who finished in eighth place last season and seven points shy of the promotion playoffs in England’s third tier. Pompey have already bolstered their attacking stocks with the signing of Anthony Scully from Wigan Athletic.

“It’s great and I’m very excited. This is a massive club and I’ve watched games when Pompey were in the Premier League,” he told the Portsmouth website.

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“I spoke with the coaching staff and they explained to me the mission and the goals – it’s something I really want to be a part of.

“This is something different for me and the next step in my career. It’s a different way of living here and I love the challenge.

“I like to be up front scoring goals, making runs in behind and challenging defenders. I think I’ll add a lot of pace, power and strength – and hopefully goals.

“It was the right moment for me to leave Australia and go on to bigger and better things. I’d already left my home town, so I feel ready.

“I know there are tonnes of fans here who pack out the stadium each week and I’m excited to learn more about the club as the journey goes on.

“I’m sure there is a great bunch of boys here and I’m looking forward to meeting them all. It’s great to have a trip to Spain to bond.”

Yengi made his A-Leagues debut as a substitute in February 2020 for Adelaide, but burst onto the scene the following season under Carl Veart, opening up his account and getting an assist in a 3-1 win over Melbourne Victory at Marvel Stadium.

He went on to make 27 appearances and score six goals for the Reds in his three seasons in the senior set-up before departing for Western Sydney.

The promising striker has also made four appearances for the Olyroos and was called up for the Under 23 Asian Cup in 2022.

Yengi is the latest player to depart the Wanderers this off-season; Morgan Schneiderlin and Amor Layouni’s loan deals both expired at the end of the season, while Yeni Ngbakoto, Romain Amalfitano and Adama Traore were among the players released.

The Wanderers have been busy on the arrival front too, signing Lachlan Brook, Dylan Pierias, Jack Clisby and Swedish attacker Marcus Antonsson, while George Antonis was handed a scholarship deal.

Western Sydney finished fourth last season in coach Marko Rudan’s first full season in charge of the club, ending a six year finals drought but were eliminated by Sydney FC in the Elimination Final.