Nichols: Santa continues to deliver


Ahead of tonight’s huge clash at Spotless, Brendon Santalab’s record-breaking Hyundai A-League exploits continue to earn him plaudits of teammates and his manager Tony Popovic.

Santalab’s brace against Wellington last weekend saw him pass Mark Bridge as Western Sydney’s all-time leading goalscorer.

Fellow forward Mitch Nichols says 34-year-old “Santa” sets a great example for the whole playing squad.

“He keeps reminding me of his age,” joked Nichols ahead of tonight’s home clash with Melbourne City. 

“But he puts in the work and looks after himself and the club manages his workload.

“Every time he plays he delivers.

“We know if we’re putting the ball in the box in the right areas, he’s going to be there to finish.

“He’s been a big part of this club and the fans really enjoy what he’s brought to the table,” said Nichols.

Tony Popovic

Wanderers boss Tony Popovic added his acclaim for the work of his evergreen front-man.

“I’ve mentioned many times my admiration for him as a person and player,” said Popovic.

“That’s shared by everyone at the football club, by his team-mates and the staff.

“He gives everything he has for this club – he always has – and he’s reaping the rewards.

“We have to do everything we can as a staff to enable him to keep producing week-in, week-out.”



Off the back of last weekend’s 3-1 win over the Phoenix which put the Wanderers in pole position for the Finals Series, Popovic is looking for a similar performance tonight.

“We’ve been playing well for a number of weeks now.

“Yes, the results have [only] turned recently, but the team has been playing well.

“If we can carry on with the confidence I’m sure the players have gained from those three points, we give ourselves a good opportunity to carry on and win again at home.”

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