Franjic brothers make Melbourne Knights return

Melbourne Knights are delighted to confirm the return of Ivan & Joseph Franjic ahead of the 2023 NPL Victoria season.

The brothers, who add a wealth of experience to the Knights defensive unit both arrive back at Somers Street via Heidelberg United as new Head Coach, Ben Cahn’s first two signings heading into the club’s 70th anniversary season.

Ivan represented the Socceroos on 20 occasions, playing at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil and was part of the 2015 AFC Asian Cup winning side.

At club level the PFA A-League Team of the Decade defender, who last played for Knights in 2008 amassed 242 national league appearances across stints at Brisbane Roar where he won three Championships and two Premierships, Perth Glory where he won one Premiership, Melbourne City where he claimed an Australia Cup winners medal and Macarthur FC.

The 35-year-old also played abroad in Korea and Russia representing Daegu FC and Torpedo Moscow.

Joining brother Ivan at Somers Street is Joseph, who is no stranger to the Knights faithful returning for a third stint in red, white and blue.

The powerful defender, who debuted for Knights as a teenager and was also a key cog in the Knights side that reached the 2019 Australia Cup Round of 32 has also plied his trade at Hume City, Heidelberg and Green Gully in the Victorian top flight.

In 2022 the Franjic brothers both played for Heidelberg United, reaching the NPL Victoria Finals and Australia Cup Round of 32.

Ivan said he is hungry for success back at the club where he played his junior football.

“It’s exciting, it’s where I played my junior football so it’s good to be back, I’m looking forward to the challenge ahead and hopefully bringing some silverware back to the club,” Ivan said.

“We’re building a strong side going into the season, we want to be performing as a team, that’s the main thing.

“Obviously, we want to challenge for top spot, that’s our aim and ambition this year so hopefully come the end of the season we’re right there playing finals.”

Joey said he couldn’t wait to get started ahead of Knights 70th anniversary season.

“I’m just excited to be back, working with Ben (Cahn) who I’ve heard a lot about and know a lot of players that have played for him who have all said really positive things, so I’m very excited to work under him,” Joey said.

“We grew up here as young kids, coming here every weekend so to play here together is really exciting and something we dreamt about as kids.

“I want to be there competing to win, that’s why we came here because we think we’ve got a chance to do it, we’re ready to give it a real nudge.”

Ivan will wear the number 5 jersey while Joseph will wear number 27 in 2023.

Stay tuned Knights fans as we begin to announce our 2023 squad over the coming weeks, along with our 70th Anniversary logo, 2023 Memberships and 2023 playing kits.

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