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By ESPN Staff

One-year Phoenix deal for Bertos

Long-serving midfielder Leo Bertos has secured a new one-year deal with A-League cellar dwellers Wellington Phoenix, the 31-year-old All White confirmed on Tuesday.

Bertos, who began his professional career with English club Barnsley in 2000 and joined the Phoenix eight years later after a two-season stint with Perth Glory, signed the contract extension with the option of a further year.

The Phoenix finished bottom of the table for the second time in the club's six-year history, in a tumultuous season which resulted in long-time coach Ricki Herbert's resignation late in February.

Assistant coach Chris Greenacre took over for the last five games of the season, but opted not to apply for the top position.

The club has yet to appoint a coach for next season.

Bertos says the season had been challenging, as he struggled with a shift to right fullback after spending most of his career as a wide midfield player.

"It's nice to know the club wanted me to stay because I definitely wanted to be here," he said.

"I actually enjoyed my stint at right back and I've played a similar role in the national team.

"Football is a team game and if you're asked to play a different position, then you just get on with the job."

Bertos will be playing alongside former Melbourne Victory star Carlos Hernandez next season, with the midfielder joining the Phoenix after a stint in India.

"It's good to see top players coming back to the A-League and great that someone like Carlos is joining the Phoenix," Bertos said.

"Carlos is well known for scoring spectacular goals but he also creates a lot of chances for other people and I look forward to playing off him."

Phoenix general manager David Dome said Bertos was a core member of the Phoenix squad.

"We began negotiations with him some time ago, and I'm really pleased he has agreed a new deal."


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