Western United bolster squad with Ben Garuccio signing

Western United can confirm its second signing of the off-season, bringing in left-back Ben Garuccio from Melbourne City.

The 26-year-old joins after playing 21 games for the A-League Champions last season, adding valuable experience and quality to United’s defence.

The Adelaide born Garuccio spoke of his excitement at joining the Western United project and helping the club achieve success.

“I’m really happy to join Western United. This is a great club with ambitions to improve, and I can’t wait to get started,” Garuccio said.

“I’m looking forward to helping the club challenge for trophies and seeing where we can go.

“The club has a really passionate fanbase that is continuing to grow, and I’m excited to play in front of them and help the growth of this club.

“Obviously I know John Aloisi from our time at Melbourne Heart, so I am very excited to work with him again and can’t wait to begin the hard work of pre-season.”

Western United’s newly appointed A-League Head Coach Aloisi signed Garuccio as a 17-year-old and gave him his A-League debut for Melbourne Heart in 2012.

“Ben is a player I have always admired, and someone I have known very well from when he was at quite a young age,” Aloisi said.

“He still possesses a lot of the qualities that I saw in him at that time – a well-rounded full-back with a good mix of defensive and attacking strengths.

“To bring him in to the club was something I wanted to do very quickly and seeing his growth in the last few years makes me excited about the role he can play in our team.”

After his time at Melbourne Heart, Garuccio moved to Adelaide United and impressed for the Reds, picking up three caps for Australia’s Under 19’s side along the way.

Garuccio played 21 games in the Scottish Premier League across two seasons between 2018 and 2020, playing twice for the Olyroos in the process, before returning to Melbourne City for last season.

Garuccio is Aloisi’s first signing as Western United boss, and he joins Dylan Wenzel-Halls as the second acquisition of the off-season ahead of the team’s return for pre-season training.