Team Wellington are pleased to confirm that midfielder, Mario Barcia, has returned to New Zealand and signed with the club after a season with Indonesian side, Semen Padang.
The 29-year old, Argentinian born player, who has made 79 appearances for Team Wellington over four seasons, was an influential figure in the squad that helped the club to their inaugural FIFA Club World Cup in 2018.
Barcia made a name for himself with the opening goal of the competition against Al Ain, which eventually saw the host side take the win and advance through to the next round.
Barcia, returning to Wellington where he has spent a significant amount of time during his football career, is looking forward to putting the Team Wellington shirt back on and playing alongside his teammates.
“It’s great to be back,” Barcia said.
“Team Wellington is a special club for me as I’ve experienced so many highs and lows and achieved some of the standout moments of my career here.
“When the opportunity came for me to return, I didn’t have to think twice.”
Barcia has spent four seasons with Team Wellington and has seen many players come and go but believes his side has what it takes to get back to winning ways this season.
“The squad is full of depth and we have lots of young talent too which is exciting to see.
“Scott [Hales] continues the playing philosophy we have had within our team before which makes for an easy transition for those of us that have been involved in previous years.
“I can’t wait to get back out on David Farrington Park and play that first game, especially in front of dedicated Team Wellington fans.”
Head Coach Scott Hales is thrilled to have Barcia back for another season, saying the defensive midfielder is part of the clubs DNA.
“Mario lives and breathes the playing philosophy here at Team Wellington.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to watch Mario as he has developed over the years and his technical and tactical ability is second to none.
“He’s a player that is held in high regard in the Wellington region as not only a player but also as a quality person too,” Hales said.
“We’ve seen what he’s capable of on the pitch with his goal scoring ability and it’s great to have him back in our set up.”
Barcia is back in Wellington and has been involved in pre-season training over the last week. We could see him make an appearance in the friendly against Hawkes Bay United this weekend.