Sanchez a Spanish coup for Western United

Western United’s A-League title hopes have been boosted by the signing of ex-Barcelona midfielder Victor Sanchez, a former teammate of Argentine great Lionel Messi.

The Catalonia-born 33-year-old arrives in Australia next month after joining United on a two-season deal.

“I am very happy to be joining an ambitious club like Western United and I want the fans to know I am committed and enthusiastic about the challenge ahead,” Sanchez said.

“I want to say thank you to those who have made this move come true. I am extremely grateful for the trust they have shown in me.

“I am looking forward to joining the team as soon as possible. We hope to have a great season.”

Víctor Sánchez isn't shy of scoring a belter 😍 Rise up with him this season and become a member: https://t.co/rOmbsr6uGo #RiseUp #WUFC pic.twitter.com/VW473Mnthn

Sanchez was part of a star-studded Barcelona squad that won La Liga and UEFA Champions League titles in 2009 with a team that included Messi, Thierry Henry, Andres Iniesta and Yaya Toure, and whose coach was current Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola.

Overall, Sanchez made more than 300 top-flight appearances in Spain, having spent the past nine seasons at Espanyol.

New Western United midfielder Victor Sanchez (right) tries to stop then Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo in a 2015 La Liga match. Picture: Alex Caparros/Getty ImagesSource:Supplied

United’s general manager of football Ante Kovacevic tipped Sánchez – who can also play as a defender – to add “class and experience” to the Mark Rudan-coached squad.

“Víctor is the consummate professional,” Kovacevic said.

“His lengthy experience in Spain’s top-flight will be a benefit to the club.

“The defensive midfield role is key to a team’s defensive and offensive play, and adding a La Liga calibre player to our team is a massive coup.”

“He will bring natural leadership qualities to the group that will definitely help inspire the team to success, with commitment and passion, to our collective footballing ambitions.”

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