Sydney FC centre half Jack Rodwell is back in the Sky Blues squad for this Saturday’s huge clash away to Isuzu-UTE A-League leaders Melbourne City.
Rodwell’s inclusion is perfect timing for Head Coach Steve Corica with the defender returning to fitness as another misses out through suspension.
Team-mate James Donachie misses out with a one-game suspension having notched five yellow cards over the course of the season.
Rodwell has been on the sidelines with a groin injury since the January 7 clash with Wellington Phoenix so as a leader on and off the pitch, his inclusion is big.
“He’s a fantastic player and great to have around the club,” said Corica.
“We’re looking forward to having him back as he is very versatile, but I think we will slowly build him into the team and just make sure he stays healthy and ready for the remaining few games.”
Another player who has come back to fitness is Jaiden Kucharski who was a late withdrawal last week through a groin complaint.
With Jake Girdwood-Reich and Adrian Segecic away on Australian U20’s international duty, plus the transfer of Patrick Yazbek, it opens the door to another talented Academy graduate – 18-year old Matthew Scarcella.
“With Segecic and Girdwood-Reich away it leaves us with a little short on numbers, but it gives other people opportunities to come in and show what they’ve got,” Corica said.
“As players leave our first priority is to promote a new face from our Academy who has done well and Matthew fits that bill.”
Having already beaten Melbourne City this season and the table so tight, this is the perfect opportunity for Sydney FC to show what they are made of.
“Every game now to the end of the season is massive. Every game in the league is difficult as you can see with the table.
“For us it is important that we continue our good run, unbeaten in four and we want to keep improving on that” Corica added.
“City lost last week so we know they’re going to come out firing and especially being at home, we’ve got to be really up for it.”
Regardless of the situation, City is always a tough challenge in Steve Corica’s eyes.
“They’ve only lost two games all season, so it’s a tough job going down there. They haven’t lost at home, so it’s a real challenge for us.
“The boys are looking forward to it and it’s a great opportunity for them.”
This weekend’s match is the first in a Melbourne doubleheader, when Sydney FC host Melbourne Victory in the Big Blue at Allianz Stadium next Saturday night. Before thinking ahead to that clash, the boys must be on their game as they look for a first win at AAMI Park against City since 2018.
Melbourne City v Sydney FC
Isuzu UTE A-League Round 18
Saturday 25th February 2023
AAMI Park, Melbourne, VIC
Kick Off: 5pm AEDT
Broadcast Live: Paramount+
Tickets: Click Here