Ruon Tongyik (def), transfer from Central Coast Mariners, Sulejman Krpic (att), transfer from Tuzla City, Yeni N'Gbakoto (mid), transfer from AS Nancy-Lorraine, Milos Ninkovic (mid), transfer from Sydney FC, Gabriel Cléùr (def), transfer from Virtus Entella, Oliver Bozanic (mid), transfer from Central Coast Mariners, Marcelo (def), transfer from Girondins de Bordeaux, Tom Beadling (mid), transfer from Barrow, Kusini Yengi (att), transfer from Adelaide United, Brandon Borrello (mid), transfer from Dynamo Dresden, Lawrence Thomas (gk), transfer from SonderjyskE, Calem Nieuwenhof (mid), transfer from Sydney FC, Aidan Simmons (att), transfer from Sydney FC, Nathanael Blair (att), transfer from APIA Leichhardt, Zachary Sapsford (mid), transfer from Chester, Romain Amalfitano (mid), free transfer.
Jack Rodwell (mid) (k), transfer to Sydney FC, Jonny Koutroumbis (def) (sp), transfer to Perth Glory, James Troisi (mid) (r), transfer to Western United, Mark Natta (def) (sp), transfer to Newcastle Jets, Nectarios Triantis (def) (sp), transfer to Central Coast Mariners, Jordi Swibel (att) (sp), transfer to Hapoel Nof HaGalil, Tass Mourdoukoutas (def) (sp), transfer to York United, Steven Ugarkovic (mid) (r), transfer to Wellington Phoenix, Tomar Hemed (att) (k), transfer to Hapoel Be'er Sheva, Phillip Cancar (def) (r), transfer to Livingston FC, Keanu Baccus (mid) (r), transfer to St. Mirren, Thomas Aquilina (def) (sp), transfer to Central Coast Mariners, Vedran Janjetovic (gk) (sp), released, Ziggy Gordon (def) (sp), released, Tomas Meijas (gk) (r), released, Dimi Petratos (att) (sp), loan ended, Kejiro Ogawa (att) (sp), loan ended.
Opted to trust in new boss Mark Rudan after a poor campaign last season, which is the right call - he' a very good manager. Changes were needed in the post-Robinson era though, and are still needed, hence the flurry of pre-season activity. Their plans weren't helped by the bad injury suffered by Russell pre-season; he won't kick a ball for them in the forthcoming campaign because of it. They've needed someone like Rudan to go through this team like a dose of salt for a long time now so they need to trust the process, and they are. It does make this team hard to predict in the meantime though!
Ins - Krpic is a complete wildcard; no idea what to expect. Bozanic is a great signing; he will help control their midfield and retain a rigid defensive structure, which Rudan loves. Cléùr was signed to replace Russell, who will miss the entire campaign through injury. Ninkovic is their most vaunted signing but he's pretty old by now, and does not look capable of playing more than 30 mins per match - still a match-winner from the bench though. Tongyik should play the understudy CB; unclear why he's opted to do that in Sydney instead of Gosford. Marcelo is a fantastic signing although if he's alongside Williams then they're going to be very worried about speed. Thomas is a great recruit as their new number one GK. Borrello is a good recruit if they can get him confident again. Lots of gambles in the transfer market. By far their best signing is Yengi though; brilliant striker that has everything. With the right service, he will be pure dynamite.
Outs - Lots of players left but few of which matter. Rodwell will be missed for his driving runs, dribbling, and experience but they've made good signings in midfield to replace him. Some good players have left other than him but none of which have actually been at their best for some years, including Hemed, who lost his confidence after moving from Phoenix. Ogawa lost his way after his promising start. Janjetovic didn't play for 2 seasons due to injury. Aquilina lost his spot to Russell. Mourdoukoutas never looked good enough; it was a complete miracle he even got into the squad. Swibel never looked good enough. Natta might be one they come to regret though - lots of potential, but Rudan seldom gave him a chance. Troisi was a class act but not a Rudan type of player so seldom shone.
So many pre-season changes makes it very challenging to anticipate what this team will do. Rudan is good at building squads that work hard but they could still be in for a rocky start whilst they figure out their best eleven. No real obvious weaknesses in this squad; two players per position other than the striker position, where there's only Yengi, who does pick up knocks quite easily. Kepic was presumably brought in to fill in where possible but he's an unknown at this point. Defence seriously loaded with strong CBs. For some reason they've opted to include four GKs in their squad this season, which is overkill. Could have a great campaign; could have a disastrous one. Latter is more familiar to them nowadays.
Likely key players - Amalfitano, Bozanic, Thomas, Yengi.
Would prefer 3-5, and have the quality to make it so. More likely to be 4-7 though.