Australia captain Milligan joins League One side Southend

League One outfit Southend United has signed Australia captain Mark Milligan in a deal that could see him become a coach at the club.

Southend announced the deal on Monday and said Milligan had "signed a one-year deal plus a club option for a further year and we have no reason to feel that Mark's playing career will not continue beyond the initial period".   -  Getty Images

Australia captain Mark Milligan has signed a one-year deal with League One outfit Southend United that is likely to lead to a coaching role with the club.

The 33-year-old has won 79 caps for the Socceroos and has been a squad member in four successive World Cup campaigns.

Southend announced the deal on Monday and said Milligan had "signed a one-year deal plus a club option for a further year and we have no reason to feel that Mark's playing career will not continue beyond the initial period".

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The club added, "Thereafter it is intended that Mark will remain with the club for at least a further two years in a coaching role either within the academy or first team, employing his vast experience and leadership skills to the advancement of Southend United Football Club."

"I'm very excited. It's always a process but to be down here now I can't wait to get started," Milligan said.

"The competitiveness of games at this level with sometimes three games a week, along with the ambition of getting the club back to the Championship, was also an important part in my decision."

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Milligan made 28 Scottish Premiership appearances for Hibernian last term and counts Al Ahli, Melbourne Victory and Shanghai Shenhua among his former clubs.

Southend only stayed in League One on goal difference last season, losing 24 of their 46 league fixtures.

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