After just turning 16, Indiana Dos Santos will be looking for the perfect birthday present on Saturday with a win over Western Sydney Wanderers.
Last season, Indiana Dos Santos made her debut aged just 15 and became the youngest ever player and goalscorer for Sydney FC in a breakout campaign.
Back again for another season, she is ready to go again and improve even more after winning the Double last season.
“It was good to have that experience playing at that level last year but it would be good to get even more this season.
“I just gotta keep working hard and hopefully I can play some games,” Indiana said.
The teenager’s pre-season was interrupted with a call up to the U17 Young Matildas squad which went to Vietnam for the AFC Women’s U17 Asian Cup Qualifiers.
“It’s really good to play for my country at Junior level,” she said.
“it’s always been a dream to play for my country at senior level and playing for the Juniors helps me see that that goal is within sight.
“It is good for me being in camp as I am one of the older ones there in comparison to being at Sydney in which I am the youngest.
“It’s good to have different responsibilities, as you learn a lot in these teams.”
Being so young and setting the league alight last season, Indiana helped inspire so many kids young and old and this has continued into the offseason.
“Every now and then I’ll be walking around and some kids will come up to me and say things like: “I wanna be like you.” “I want to make my debut when I’m young.” “I want to break your record.”
“So yeah this makes me feel really happy that I inspired so many. Like, it’s yeah, it’s super cool,” the 16-year-old said almost lost for words.
Despite all the noise from outside about her talent, what makes Indiana uniquely her, is her grounded nature.
“I had a bit of a reflection on what I did last season. I am proud of what I did but I need to keep working hard and achieve more goals. I just need to work harder to achieve these.”
And for the midfielder who played at Allianz Stadium in last season’s Elimination Final, she will be back there this weekend and is looking forward to seeing the fans come out in their numbers.
“I can’t wait to see the crowd. I hope there are lots that come out after the World Cup.
“I’m very excited. I can’t wait for Saturday,” she said.
Best of all though, Indiana will have her sister Jynaya along for the ride too much like last year.
“Having a sister in the team is something that not everyone is going to have during their career so it is very special.
“Our family loves football so for them, seeing us play puts a smile on their face and they are always proud of us.”
Catch Indiana and the rest of her team-mates in action this Saturday at Allianz Stadium.
If you have a child aged 16 and under like Indiana Dos Santos, then they are eligible for the Liberty A-League Pass which provides free entry to all Liberty A-League games, on any day, at any venue in Australia throughout the 2023/24 Liberty A-League Women home and away season.* Learn more here.
Sydney FC v Western Sydney Wanderers
Liberty A-League Round One
Saturday 14th October 2023
Allianz Stadium, Sydney, NSW
Kick Off: 7:45pm AEDT
Gates Open: 6:45pm AEDT
Broadcast Live: Paramount+ & 10Bold
Tickets: Click Here