Reddy get's A-League lifeline at Mariners
Liam Reddy has been handed an A-League lifeline with reigning champions Central Coast finalising a one-year deal with the disgraced former Sydney FC goalkeeper.
Sixteen months after he was sacked by the Sky Blues, Reddy has penned what's been described as a "zero-tolerance" contract to replace star gloveman Mathew Ryan, who left for Belgian outfit Club Brugge.
The 32-year-old has had stints with four previous A-League clubs, the most recent ending at Sydney FC after he was kicked out for getting drunk on the flight to a game.
After a brief spell in Iran, Reddy returned to win the NSW Premier League with Sydney United last week, and convinced coach Graham Arnold over an extended trial that he was ready to step up.
Reddy recognises the deal as his last change at playing in Australia's top-flight and will have to battle with 28-year-old gloveman Justin Pasfield to be the first-choice keeper as the Mariners commence their championship defence.
"I acknowledge that I have made mistakes in my life and football career, and as such I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Mariners for providing me the chance to make amends and prove that I still have plenty to offer the A-League," Reddy said on Friday.
"This is my last opportunity to play at the elite level in Australia and I intend to make the most of it.
"I have a zero-tolerance contract at the club, and give my guarantee that I will work hard to not only win over the fans but repay the faith that Graham, (goalkeeping coach) John (Crawley) and the Mariners have shown in me."
While Reddy's indiscretions on and off the pitch are well documented, Arnold said the shot-stopper deserved another chance.
"At this club we believe in second chances and Liam has trained extremely well over the past two weeks to earn his contract with us," Arnold said.
"His task now is to continue to demonstrate the professionalism and maturity he has shown over the past 12 months in order to validate our decision.
"Put simply, if we didn't believe he will do that and that he can add to our club from a football perspective we wouldn't have signed him."
Reddy's arrival will continue the remodelling of one of the most settled defences in the competition, with Pedj Bojic (Sydney FC) joining Ryan on the outgoing list and veteran defender Patrick Zwaanswijk having retired to join the club's coaching staff.