The Wellington Phoenix unveiled new striker Jeremy Brockie today and the New Zealand international can’t wait for the season to begin.
Brockie, 24, has signed a three-year contract with the Phoenix on the back of a successful season with the Newcastle Jets during which he scored nine goals, many of them contenders for goal of the season.
“I didn’t score too many tap-ins did I?” Brockie said with a laugh.
“They looked pretty good on the highlight reels that’s for sure.”
The move back to New Zealand after spells with Queensland Fury and Newcastle Jets is something Brockie, who made his Hyundai A-League debut for the now-defunct New Zealand Knights, has been looking forward to.
“I had offers from elsewhere but once the Phoenix showed interest there was only one place I wanted to be,” he said.
“It is going to be exciting playing for a professional club in my own country in front of my friends and family.
“I know my Dad is delighted that he will only have a 25 minute flight across Cook Strait to see me play instead of the journey to Newcastle.
“I feel now is just the right time to come back to New Zealand and I am well aware of how settled the Phoenix squad is.
“Talking to Ben (Sigmund) and Tim (Brown) convinced me how tight knit the players at the club are, and the Phoenix don’t chop and change their playing staff like some clubs.
“That has helped them reach three successive finals series and I hope I can help them go one better in the coming season.
“Scoring goals is a confidence thing and getting nine this season put me on a high.
“I’ve always known I can score goals and now I’m on a run hopefully I can continue the same form in Wellington.”
Brockie’s move was arranged some weeks ago but first there was a honeymoon on Hamilton Island with wife Jessica to fit in.
Asked if Jessica, being from Townsville where it is a pleasant 26 degrees in autumn, is in for a shock from Wellington’s weather Brockie said he didn’t envisage any problem.
“We spent three days in Wellington on the way to Nelson a short time ago and I had her prepared for how it could be,” he said.
“Throughout our stay it was clear blue skies and no wind. She said ‘I love this city’!”
There are two things in particular that Brockie is looking forward to at the Phoenix. One is being on the same team as Ben Sigmund, the other is playing alongside Paul Ifill.
“I played against Ben when he was at Christchurch United and he kicked me a few times,” Brockie said with a laugh, “but I’ll have to watch out at training!
“Paul Ifill is a fantastic player and I’ve enjoyed watching him over the past couple of years.
“He not only scores goals but has great vision and sets them up for team-mates.”
Brockie will wear the No 11 shirt worn by crowd favourite Daniel for the past five seasons, and if he scores goals for the Phoenix the calibre of those he netted for Newcastle this season the home fans will take him to their hearts as they did Daniel.