The Socceroo eyeing an A-Leagues swansong – ‘I’d love to come back’

Socceroos striker Mitch Duke says he’d love nothing more than the chance to finish his career in the Isuzu UTE A-League with the Western Sydney Wanderers or the Central Coast Mariners.

Duke’s stock rose immeasurably after Australia’s World Cup exploits with the hardworking forward scoring a crucial goal in the Socceroos’ win over Tunisia.

The 32-year-old’s form helped him seal a move between clubs in the Japanese second division, switching from Fagiano Okayama to Tokyo-based Machida Zelvia.

While Duke is happily contracted to Machida, who are undefeated to start the J2 season, until the end of 2025, a farewell back home is an enticing prospect.


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“I don’t know when I’ll potentially finish,” Duke said ahead of Friday’s fixture against Ecuador at CommBank Stadium.

“In an ideal world I’d love to come back to the A-League and finish there,”

“Where I started at the Mariners or the Wanderers, I’d be open to returning.

“The lifestyle and just to be back here would be pretty special.”

Awer Mabil, Mitchell Duke and Aziz Behich

Duke has been monitoring the Wanderers’ exploits from afar this season and revelled in their 4-0 derby demolition of Sydney FC last Saturday.

The win puts Duke’s old club en route for their first finals finish since 2017.

“They’re flying, (Marko) Rudan has recruited really well and they’ve smashed it,” Duke said.

“The players have bought into the system and I loved seeing the derby match – they absolutely killed it – and I loved the ‘bang average’ quotes.

“It’s good to see them doing well, it’s a club that deserves to be in the finals and hopefully that brings back all the supporters because the A-League needs that.”