Wanderers secure N’gbakoto

Western Sydney Wanderers FC have secured French native Yeni N’gbakoto for the upcoming Isuzu UTE A-League season.

Born in Croix in France, N’gbakoto started his junior career at St Clemenceau before earning a move to St Metz’s Youth Academy.

The fast-paced winger made his debut for Metz’s senior team in 2009 and stayed at the club for seven seasons, making 185 appearances and scoring 44 goals. 

In 2016, N’gbakoto secured a move to Queens Park Rangers, playing in 31 games and scoring three goals in the English Championship. 

After two seasons in the United Kingdom, N’gbakoto returned back to France with North-Western side Guingamp where he featured in 75 matches and scored 13 goals. 

More recently, N’gbakoto had a two-year spell at Greek giants Panathinaikos in the Super League before returning to France with Nancy at the start of this season. 

N’gbakoto represented France at a youth level making over 44 appearances and scoring 10 goals, before changing his national team allegiance to his heritage of DR Congo. 

The DR Congo’s representative’s arrival in Western Sydney will mark the first time N’gbakoto will play outside of Europe and is set to arrive in the coming weeks to Western Sydney with his family.

Head coach Mark Rudan praised N’gbakoto’s commitment to the club.

“Yeni will be bring an intensity and speed that we need in our squad this season and is a fantastic asset to have in the attacking third,” said Rudan.

“He (Yeni) has proven himself at multiple clubs in Europe at some of the highest leagues and that experience will be invaluable for the club this season.

“We welcome him and his family to the Wanderers and wish them safe travels to their new home in Western Sydney.”

N’gbakoto said he was eager to be part of Rudan’s project at the Wanderers.

“I was filled with enthusiasm by the sound of the project at the Wanderers as soon as my agent told me about it,” said N’gbakoto.

“I had spoken to players who played and are still playing in the A-Leagues who had told me good things about the competition. 

“I also had a meeting with the Boss Mark (head coach Mark Rudan) who motivated me. His speech, his way of seeing football, his ambition and most importantly his relationship with the families of the club. He makes me feel comfortable and confident, and I am looking forward to playing under his leadership.

“I want the Wanderers to be the Champions. I want to score, assist and win many games. I want to enjoy my football with my fellow players. 

“I want to give myself the means to be an important player for the team and be part of the project for the long term. 

“I’m looking forward to meeting my teammates, the staff and all the people who work for the club, and the fans.

“Let this new challenge start.”