Guiseley surprise by signing 41 year old Shane Smeltz who scored a famous goal for New Zealand against Italy at the 2010 World Cup.
Smeltz spent most of his childhood playing in Australia, before heading over to England for two and a quarter seasons. From 2007 to 2007, he played mainly in the A-League, with brief stints in Turkey with Genclerbirligi and Malaysia with Kedah FA.
After his professional playing career ended with the Indonesian team Borneo he returned to the sport as a semi-professional.
Smeltz was the A-League’s second-highest goal scorer and the highest-goalscorer for Gold Coast United. In 58 international appearances, he scored 24 goals for New Zealand. He also played in the FIFA World Cup 2010.
He scored 28 goals in 45 games for Gold Coast United, who he signed with in January 2020. He has since returned home to England for work and family joining Guiseley AFC, who are 11th in the Northern Premier League – Premier Division with 34 points from 24 games played.
He’s had quite the career:
✔️ Scored in the 2010 World Cup against Italy
✔️ Two time A-League Golden Boot winner
✔️ Second highest A-League scorer
✔️ Played for clubs in Australia, England, Indonesia, Turkey and Malaysia#GuiseleyTogether pic.twitter.com/S9zVGksKcX
— Guiseley AFC (@GuiseleyAFC) January 12, 2023
We are delighted to announce the signing of striker Shane Smeltz.
Guiseley AFC have signed a striker who will forever be remembered for scoring a goal against then World champions Italy in the 2010 World Cup writes Rachel O’Connor.
Shane Smeltz has joined the Pitching In Northern Premier League Premier Division side after moving to Leeds from the Southern Hemisphere for family and work reasons.
The now 41 year-old was born in Germany, raised on Australia’s Gold Coast and gained international recognition playing for New Zealand, who he represented 58 times scoring 24 goals.
He is to resurrect his playing career, a career he thought was over after 18 years as a professional footballer.
A career which saw him star in that 2010 World Cup game in South Africa which saw New Zealand draw 1-1 with Italy.
On his signing for Guiseley Smeltz said: “I have recently come to Leeds with my family and settled here for family and work reasons. I let a few people know that I may want to play and I ended up talking with the Guiseley manager Paul Phillips.
“One thing led to another and I looked into it and the club appealed to me.”
He added: “Obviously I am joining to play my part on the pitch and however the manager and the staff see fit.”
Although Smeltz was at one time looking to move into coaching that is not now the case.
He explained: “I have completed my A coaching licence but I don’t wish to be coaching in any capacity. I am simply happy to be another bit of experience that players and staff can bounce off.”
The vastly experienced player has a full time role in player management, looking after a number of top talents from Australia.
Of his link up with Phillips Smeltz said: “My connection with the manager is obviously new but instantly I can see he’s an experienced and intelligent guy who is driven to succeed at what he does.
“When you have played the game as long as I have you have to have that same mindset so I’m looking forward to getting around the club.”
Smeltz had many moments in football in his 18 years as a pro in a number of countries.
He retired from professional football a few months ago with his last club being his home town side Gold Coast United in Australia.
Of his career he said: “I get asked all the time about what was my highlight and I guess you can’t go past playing in the World Cup and scoring against the current world champions Italy at the time. Those moments are hard to beat!”
Of his early years Smeltz said: “The Gold Coast is my home, I grew up in Australia from the age of six so I always lean towards the Gold Coast. However, New Zealand obviously holds a big bond with me as I played for the national team since I was 19.”
The talents who impressed a young Smeltz were the original Ronaldo, Thierry Henry and Eric Cantona.
His favourite team?
“Arsenal was always my team, I enjoyed watching them as I grew up and I enjoyed the moment I swapped shirts with Thierry Henry when I played against him for New Zealand against France.”
Smeltz started out as a midfielder when he was younger but got to an age where he was scoring regularly so always played as a striker after that.
Major influences on his career have been his father, his family as they have always helped drive him to achieve and each coach he has always taken the best from.
Of his new venture at Guiseley he said: “I think I’ll bring my experience and an ability to help players around me. I watched the team live last week and the commitment was great to see. I think sometimes younger players seeing myself still playing and being competitive gives them a good perspective as well.”
A two-time A-League golden boot winner Smeltz played for Borneo FC in Indonesia and the old-fashioned predatory No 9 also played for clubs in Australia, England, Turkey and Malaysia.
He is second on the A-League’s record goal scorers list with 92 goals. He was the competition’s top scorer in 2008-09 for Wellington and 2009-10 for Gold Coast United. He also played for Perth Glory (28 goals in 58 appearance) and Sydney FC (12 goals in 43 games) in the A-League.
1997–1998 – QAS
1999 – Gold Coast City
1999–2001 – Brisbane Strikers
2001–2002 – Napier City Rovers
2002–2003 – Adelaide City
2003–2004 – Adelaide United
2004 – MetroStars
2005 – Mansfield Town
2005–2006 – AFC Wimbledon
2006–2007 – Halifax Town
2007–2009 – Wellington Phoenix
2009–2010 – Gold Coast United
2010–2011 – Gençlerbirliği
2011 – Gold Coast United
2011–2014 – Perth Glory
2014–2016 – Sydney FC
2016 – Kedah FA
2016–2017 – Wellington Phoenix
2017 – Borneo
2020–2023 – Gold Coast United
2001 – New Zealand U20
2004 – New Zealand U23
2012 – New Zealand Olympic (O.P.)
2003–2017 – New Zealand
This is what fans said as Guiseley surprise by signing the 41 year old who scored famous goal against Italy at the 2010 World Cup…
@samh__15: An unreal signing 🤩
@alcock_glenn: How the fuck did you pull this off……..
@WanCtfcWest: This club has pull 😎
@hqmike85: @phillo07 well played pal, that’s some signing……..
@ricardoyorks: Blimey! Welcome Shane!
@50shadesofhaigh: Baller, was integral in my Wimbledon team on Footy Manager back in the day 😃 Welcome Shane! ⭐️
@cayden_sands: This club just gets more massive #GAFC
@TimHickman1994: Regardless of his age that is an absolutely mad signing for them 😳
@WeAreTheShaymen: Shane Smeltz back in Yorkshire shock 😳
@GuiseleyFans: Shane Smeltz is such a bizarre signing but I’m all for it! I’d be happy if we got 10 games this season out of him 🤷♂️
— Luke Bernard-Haigh (@50shadesofhaigh) January 12, 2023