Now, he’s quickly starting to add the pieces to the puzzle.
The A-League club announced on Tuesday the signings of Roly Bonevacia, Josh Risdon and Michael Thwaite.
Centre-back Thwaite, who has been without a club since departing Liaoning Whowin in China, has inked a one-year deal, while former Wellington midfielder Bonevacia and Perth right-back Risdon have signed until the 2018-2019 season.
“It has a lot to do with the response from both ex-players and the current players at the Wanderers. I know that Tony’s very thorough and his success is proven so it’s something that I’m very eager to be a part of,” Thwaite said.
“Western Sydney is a very important region for me because that’s where my professional career started, so I feel that I need to give something back to the region.”
Risdon’s arrival has been mooted for some time, particularly once Scott Neville went west as a replacement.
The 24-year-old has played three times for Australia, but this presents the 142-game A-League player with a fresh start to make another push for an international spot.
PODCAST: Adam Peacock, Daniel Garb and Simon Hill review the epic grand final between Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory, and discuss what your A-League club needs for next season.
“Obviously being at Perth for so long, it was a tough decision but I feel that this is the right choice and I’m really excited for the new experience,” Risdon said.
“The Wanderers are a great Club and have achieved so much in such a small time, so I’m looking forward to working under Tony Popovic and taking my game to the next level.”
Bonevacia, 25, has 80 A-League games under his belt, and the Ajax academy graduate, who played in the Eredivisie with NAC Breda and Roda JC, will make the move from New Zealand to Sydney to start a “new challenge”.
“The Club is very hungry for success and the coach gets the best of out his players and makes them better, so I can’t wait to get started.”
Wanderers’ squad so far:
TRANSFER CENTRE: Every club in, out, marquee, current squad status
Goalkeepers: Vedran Janjetovic, Jerrad Tyson
Defenders: Jonathan Aspropotamitis, Keanu Baccus, Aritz Borda, Jack Clisby, Robert Cornthwaite, Brendan Hamill, Josh Risdon, Michael Thwaite
Midfielders: Roly Bonevacia, Steven Lustica, Jacob Melling
At tackers: Jumpei Kusukami, Brendon Santalab, Lachlan Scott, Jaushua Sotirio