Peter Desira, Herald Sun
Thursday, 4 December 2003
Melbourne Knights are hoping for a fairytale ending after an African international turned up on their doorstep.
Yidnek Moges arrived in Melbourne last week primarily to meet his in-laws after marrying an Australian, but took advantage of his visit by asking to train with the Knights.
“He trained with us in the rain on Tuesday night and I’ve asked him to come back for the rest of the week, so first impressions have been good,” Knights coach Ian Dobson said yesterday.
“You can tell he’s definitely played (at a good level). He’s got a nice touch, I thought his mobility was good and I thought it was worth extending to have a good look at him.”
Assistant coach Lou Kastner studied Moges’ skills, while Dobson concentrated on the 14 players he has in mind to use for Sunday night’s home game against Newcastle.
“Lou reckons his finishing was very good,” Dobson said.
“First sessions are always difficult because he didn’t know anybody and he couldn’t call for the ball, but that will change over the next week.
“But the initial thoughts are this could be quite promising.
“We’ve had players walk in off the street before, but certainly not with the credentials of an international player.”
Moges, 29, has played for nine years in the Ethiopian Premier League with St George.
“He claims he scored 22 goals last season and was the league’s third-highest scorer,” Dobson said. “He’s been called up to the national team but there are internal problems in the game over there and he indicated to me that his intentions are to move.”
Moges’ wife Kathy made the initial approach to the Knights, but Dobson is satisfied with the player’s English and said communication would not be a problem on the field.
“It’s a first-time visit for Yidnek, mainly to meet my family, and we’re here till just before Christmas at this stage,” Kathy Moges said.
“We’re looking at our options. The Melbourne incentive is I’ve got my family here, but I’ve lived in Ethiopia for two years and that’s home, too.”