Phoenix sign Downey on two-year deal

by AAP on May 05, 2011

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Wellington Phoenix have signed former A-League fullback Jimmy Downey from Dutch side Sparta Rotterdam on a two-year deal.

The former Australia under-20 winger spent two seasons with Perth Glory before switching to the now-defunct North Queensland Fury for the final five games of last season.

He then signed a one-year deal with Sparta last July after the Fury released all their players.

He only managed three appearances during his spell at the Dutch second division club, which was hampered by injury.

"Holland was a really good experience but it was frustrating having those niggling injuries," Downey said.

"I would love to go back to Europe sometime in the future but the best thing for me was to come back to Australia and get myself fit.

"Once the Phoenix signalled their interest in signing me it was an easy decision. The A-League is a great competition to play in."

Phoenix head coach Ricki Herbert said he was happy to have bolstered his defence.

"A recognised attacking right fullback is something we've been lacking," Herbert said.

"It is great to get him on board. He has had a good A-League career and has been abroad, so we know what we are getting."

Downey will officially join the Wellington club on June 1.