As reported by Sky Sports, the Australian club have revealed that the 23-year-old is set to join the Citizens, with a post on the team’s official Twitter account appearing to confirm that the deal is almost wrapped up.
— #CCMFC (@CCMariners) January 15, 2016
Caceres may seem like an odd choice of a signing for Premier League-chasing City—it’s exceptionally rare that a player takes a step up from the Australian A-League to an elite European side—but Mariners representatives have praised the player’s talent ahead of the move being confirmed.
“We need to celebrate when players at the Central Coast Mariners are sold to bigger clubs. It’s our charter. It’s our intent,” Mariners coach Tony Walmsley told the club’s official website.
“When I brought Anthony Caceres to the Mariners his potential was obvious,” he continued, referring back to the player’s move to the club in 2012.
“This move demonstrates how far Anthony has progressed and symbolises how giving youth a chance works for both the Central Coast Mariners and young aspirational footballers.”
Indeed, his words are echoed by John van’t Schip—the coach of Melbourne City, a club affiliated with the Sky Blues, and a side who could be set to benefit from the move should the Citizens send Caceres back to Australia on loan [as mooted by Sky Sports as above].
“We can’t comment on [a potential loan move],” the former Ajax winger began, “but of course everybody knows he’s a good player, he’s one of the better players in the A-League. So we’ll just have to see.”
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Caceres has made 62 league outings for the CC Mariners since moving to the club from Brisbane Road, and has already featured in three editions of the AFC Champions League.
Should he move to the Etihad Stadium immediately, Caceres will have to compete with the likes of Yaya Toure, Fernando, Fernandinho and Fabian Delph for a spot in the heart of the park.