Gateshead have signed Australian defender Mark McManus on a one-year deal, subject to FA approval.

The 21-year-old has been at the International Stadium since pre-season, featuring in three friendly matches against Morpeth, Guiseley and Blyth Spartans. McManus joins Gateshead after leaving Australian Second Tier side Manly United. The central defender also spent time at Central Coast Mariners as a teenager before later moving to Spain to join Hércules CF.

After signing a one-year deal, McManus said: “It feels really good to finally get sorted with the boys.

“I’ve enjoyed training with them over the past couple of month and they are a good bunch of young, hungry and eager players like myself. This is my first time playing in England and I’ve been very impressed by the standard and the quality of the players we have here.

“Everyone is young here and for most of us, this is our first or second season in senior football so it’s exciting to be officially part of it now.”

McManus will wear the number 20 shirt for the Heed as he becomes Steve Watson’s 14th new recruit of the 2018/19 season. And the centre-back is hoping to prove himself as a good addition to the squad.

“Most of my background is in Australia, coming through the semi-pro leagues in Australia and playing in the second division there, I also spent 18 months in Spain,” McManus continued.

“I’ve always wanted to come to Europe and especially England to give it a crack and I’m delighted to be here at Gateshead. We just have to see how well we can do, I think we can go all the way and have a good go at it this season. We’ve got a great squad and I just want to get as many minutes as I can and help out.”

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