Diego Cabello (def), transfer from Sabadell, Alex Parsons (mid), transfer from Brisbane Roar, Robert Mak (mid), transfer from Ferencvaros, Jack Rodwell (mid), transfer from Western Sydney Wanderers, Joe Lolley (mid), transfer from Nottingham Forest.
Anton Milnaric (def) (sp), loan to Brisbane Roar turned permanent, Mustafa Amini (mid) (r), transfer to Perth Glory, Ben Warland (def) (sp), transfer to Adelaide United, Milos Ninkovic (mid) (sp), transfer to Western Sydney Wanderers, Calem Nieuwenhof (mid) (sp), transfer to Western Sydney Wanderers, Luciano Narsingh (att) (sp), transfer to Miedz Legnica, Liam McGing (def) (sp), transfer to Finn Harps, Harry van der Saag (def) (sp), transfer to Adelaide United, Trent Buhagiar (att) (sp), transfer to Newcastle Jets, Kosta Barbarouses (att) (r), transfer to Wellington Phoenix, Callum Talbot (def) (r), transfer to Melbourne City, Chris Zuvela (mid) (sp), released, Michael Zullo (def) (sp), released, Bobo (att) (sp), retired.
Widely whispered that this is Corica's last chance to turn Sydney FC's fortunes around after an utterly shambolic campaign last time out which resulted in one of Australia's biggest clubs not even making the play-offs. Sydney FC deliberated for a long time whether to renew Corica's expiring contract, and eventually did so. Something is rotten at the club though. They've not completed the overhaul that was desperately needed; the barely scratched at the surface.
Ins - Cabello has come in to be their regular LB. Parsons will play the Ninkovic role of last season (i.e. enter from the bench in games the team is struggling in to unlock defences). Mak is an excellent creator/dribbler with a good shot on him. Lolley is another good addition in the final third. Their most controversial pre-season signing was that of Rodwell, who had been playing with bitter rivals WSW. A real class act on his day; keeping fit has long been his problem though.
Outs - Some surprising departures, and some not so surprising. Amini did well in spells so seeing him leave was a bit of a surprise, although game time would have been limited with Brattan back. They apparently didn't want to let club legend Ninkovic go but it was a real cloak and dagger situation so he moved to WSW; probably for the best as he couldn't play more than 30 mins anymore. Buhagiar was too inconsistent, and not a good finisher. Barbarouses' effectiveness all but disappeared. Bobo should have retired 2 seasons ago.
There has seldom been such disparity in an A-League squad between the starting eleven and the backup players as there is at Sydney FC right now. Almost every single starter is technically a key player because their backups are nowhere near their level. Brattan's return from injury will help them control games but so many weaknesses are now evident that it may not matter. No defensive depth whatsoever. Only one midfielder that know how to win the ball back. Too many similar midfielders (ball-carriers, creators) and not enough match-winners. Star striker Le Fondre had more than a few wobbles last season, and at his age, it's understandable. Have opted not to replace fellow striker Bobo though, placing even more pressure upon the veteran to bail them out, and play in every game despite waning fitness levels. They've only named 6 defenders for the season ahead but usually play a 4-4-2! They might think they're in for a title push but barring some next level football, it's not going to happen - and a Corica exit is more than possible as he's been leading a charmed life thus far, but that never lasts forever, does it?
Likely key players - Grant, Le Fondre, Mak, Wilkinson.
They want 1-3. 5-8 looks more realistic right now.