FORMER Blacktown Demons footballer Nicholas Fitzgerald, 20, is moving back to NSW — not with the Western Sydney Wanderers but the Central Coast Mariners.
The striker who grew up in The Hills has been signed by the Mariners to cover for the expected loss of Tomas Rogic, who's finalising contract terms with Scottish Premier League champions Celtic.
Fitzgerald makes the move after two years with Brisbane Roar where he won two successive championships.
Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald, Fitzgerald said his new two-year deal will enable him to play more first-team football.
"After some recent discussions with [Mariners coach] Graham Arnold, I am confident that I will be given that opportunity at the Mariners."
Fitzgerald formerly played with the Mariners in 2009 when he was a member of the club's National Youth League squad.
He made one appearance off the bench for the Gosford team under former coach Lawrie McKinna.
Arnold said Fitzgerald's history with the Mariners will ensure an easier transition for him into the club both on and off the pitch.
"He is a player of enormous potential [who can] take his game to the next level."
Fitzgerald is contracted to the Roar until the end of the season but has been demoted to the club's National Youth League team. He's applied to terminate his contract to link with the Mariners in January.