A desire to spend more time with family and friends on the Border has enticed Archie Thompson to rejoin Murray United for the remainder of the season.
The 39-year-old loved his time at the club last year so much, he began to miss it.
After knocking back offers from Melbourne clubs from Moreland City and Bulleen, a spot was available at Murray in the mid-season transfer window and Thompson was more than happy to fill it.
“I was sitting down and thinking what I wanted to do and I missed being home around family and friends and being around the Murray boys,” Thompson said.
“What David and Pedro (Afonso) have created there is such a good feel.
“Going to Bulleen or Moreland City, they’re great clubs, but there was something missing and I don’t think I would have got it anywhere else but Murray.
“I still feel like playing and I want to contribute and football helps me get away from the stresses of life.
“Pedro was telling me he had one spot left to fill and asked if I knew anybody interested, so I texted him back ‘do you want someone that’s a bit over the hill and still keen to kick a ball about’?
“What saddened me was that he knew who it was straight away, maybe because there’s not a lot of old buggers out there that still want to run around.
“It ticked every box at the right time and already I’ve had texts from some of the boys who are delighted to have me back.”
Thompson admitted he’s left the ego behind and is willing to play wherever he’s required.
“Now it’s just about getting the time to come back for training and being part of the team again,” he said.
“I haven’t played a competitive game since the last game for Murray back in August, but hopefully I’ll catch up to speed pretty quickly and be part of the team.
“I’ve got that bit of fire back which is nice to have.
“What Murray is trying to create by being professional and competitive is what every club wants to strive for, but if you’ve got that family feel around and everyone is happy, you just can’t buy that.”
“I think I’m more excited than they are because of what they’ve created, players want to come back and be part of it.”
When the opportunity arose, Murray coach Elliot Jones admitted signing Thompson for another stint at the club was a no-brainer.
“I had a really good chat with Archie to make sure everything was for the right reasons and he was really keen to get back amongst the guys,” Jones said.
“He’s such a great guy, he’s got an infectious smile and it’s a real buzz for the group.
“I guess he never really left, he just couldn’t commit to the start of the year.
“The thing I’m most pleased with is he said he’s happy to play whatever role is needed for the side and wants to come in and help out.
“To hear that from a guy of Archie’s experience and calibre is great.
“He’ll certainly add something to the squad, although I don’t think I’ll be reinventing him as left back, it’s pretty obvious where he’ll play on the park.
“I’m obviously excited as a coach to coach a guy like Archie, but I don’t think he needs much coaching.
“We’ll put him in areas on the park where he’s dangerous and let him express himself and really enjoy it.”
Thompson is unavailable for Saturday’s home clash against Brunswick City, but will put his hand up for selection next weekend, having scored seven goals from his 18 starts for the Border outfit last year.
He joins former Melbourne Victory teammate Daniel Vasilevski and Angel Taravillo as Murray’s mid-season recruits.
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