Testing times ahead for Collingwood as three stars leave team


FC Collingwood will have a tough time in the coming weeks as it will be forced to rebuild its squad after three keys players have left the relegated club.

Team captain Ben Monteleone, his brother Joe and rising star Giovanni Garcia will play for FC Balwyn, starting at this Sunday’s Foz Cup.

The mass exodus leaves FC Collingwood is a fragile state, set to battle it out in the ultra-competitive State Championships next season.

Series Futsal CEO Peter Parthimos says that there will be no take over of Collingwood with the team name to remain in the elite leagues, however, he is going to keep a close eye on the squad that is assembled.

“It’s a shame that three young stars have left Collingwood – there’s nothing better to go down a league and then come back up,” Parthimos said.

“That’s exactly what happened to Carlton. They had a bad season but bounced back in the best way possible.

“I can understand the Monteleone boys and Giovanni wanting to stay in Series Futsal. The glitz, the music, the news reports, the live stream – that’s what everyone aims for, so while I’m disappointed that are leaving the team, especially Ben who is one of the competition’s most exciting players, I can see their reasoning. I wish the three all the best at their new home.”

The news exciting for FC Balwyn, however, as the team not only acquires three of its leading stars, Balwyn is also set to take over Collingwood’s youth team.

“We want to bring in and develop players, and we see as the best way to move Balwyn forward,” said manager Gabriel Zeballos.

“We want the senior team and the junior team to play the same style of futsal, so when there’s injuries or a shortage of players, we can easily promote players between the teams.

“It also means that no ones place is guaranteed. Some of the younger guys are willing to learn and willing to fully commit. It gives us more options.

“The way that Series Futsal is going, the clubs need to grow and we need to look outside the box.”

In other Balwyn news, former Italian national player Marco Cardinalli will make his long awaited return at the Foz Cup this Sunday.