Talk has been fast and frequent about Kewell’s return of late but Heart manager, and former Socceroo teammate, John Aloisi has said he has “been in regular contact with Harry over the past few months”.
Aloisi went on to say that he has been watching “Harry’s progress in the Middle East very closely and it’s clear that physically he is in great condition” and that he “will be flying by round one”.
The opening round of the 2013/14 season will see Heart take on cross-town rivals Melbourne Victory, where Kewell once donned the number 22 jersey in his last A-League appearance (leaving for family reasons in the UK).
Merchandise of the Kewell 22 were hot property in 2011/12 for the Navy side of Melbourne but now it’s the folks across town that will be priding themselves in the Red number 10.
Kewell is not the only player to defect from the Victory to the Heart. One that stands out is the Brazilian Fred, who was a key influence on the Victory’s success, returned from MLS in America for a 2-year-deal with the Heart.
Kewell released a statement though the club saying, “It’s always been my intention to come back and play in the A-League. John Aloisi and I have known each other a long time and we have played together, so I’m thrilled to be part of Melbourne Heart at an exciting time.”
Heart CEO Scott Munn has gone publicly saying that, “Harry is not coming to the club as a marquee player and will be within the salary cup”, in fact he will be on minimum wages.
He will, however be making extra money towards his salary with marketing deals, endorsements and existing sponsorship arrangements.
Game 1 / Melbourne Derby will be played at Etihad Stadium on October 12.