Sherlock ready to lead Sky Blue youth

Sydney FC head off to the Sunshine State to play the Brisbane Roar at Spencer Park this weekend to kick off the 2010/11 National Youth League season.

Sydney FC head off to the Sunshine State to play the Brisbane Roar at Spencer Park this weekend to kick off the 2010/11 National Youth League season.

The new-look young Sky Blues, under the reign of first time coach and club legend Steve Corica, begin an arduous 23-week season on Sunday (kick-off 3pm).

The group will hold their final training session at Macquarie University tonight from 6pm, rounding out their preseason campaign and Captain Nathan Sherlock feels that once the team gets a few games under their belt his side will be hard to beat.

“There-s no factor whether the boys can play. They are here for a reason and they-ve shown great potential already,” Sherlock, who will be one of the team-s central defenders, said.

“I think if we can get our acts together as quick as we can because we-ve only been together for a short time due to State League commitments, I think the more stronger team we are going to be and probably more frightful as well.”

The team played two pre-season games, first against the AIS, losing 3-2 in injury time, before going down 3-0 to a star studded Young Socceroos.

Sherlock feels the team proved themselves with strong performances in those games, playing some exceptional football which will leave them in good stead heading into the NYL season.

“The results didn-t go our way. We did show glimpses of how we can really play and what we can achieve,” Sherlock said.

“I think against the Socceroos we did that as well. We had a few good 15 to 20 minute spells where we dominated them and knocked the ball around really smoothly.”

Corica and assistant coach Ian Crook handpicked the team after extensive scouting in the off season and Sherlock thinks with such experienced and influential coaches surrounding the team, there is no doubt that they should enjoy a successful season.

“It-s obviously his first coaching role but from what I can see I think he-ll be a good coach and you can tell he-s had that experience as a player that he can pass on to individual players, as well with the help with Ian Crook,” Sherlock said.

“I think just listening to him for five minutes you see the knowledge and experience he has, which is going to rub off on all of us in the season to come. So we couldn-t wish for better coaches than him (Crook) and Steve.”

Sherlock said he was honored to be made captain of the aspiring young side, and although it-s a tough job, he hopes that he can live up to the title.

“To be captain is something special. Not something you expect all the time when you go there. I-ll do my best to lead the boys by example,” Sherlock said.

“For me it-s a bit of an honor but at the same time it comes with responsibility and it-s your job to do it. So I hope that I can do it.”

As the team makes their final preparation for this week-s game, Sherlock said the atmosphere within the team is one of high anticipation.

“It-s the first game of the year so the excitement amongst the boys will be high and they-ll be hoping to do the best they can so we can get the three points,” Sherlock said.

“Although we haven-t sat down and talked about it, I-m sure it-s in the back of everybody-s mind that we always want the best for each other and as a team and if we do that we can finish in the top four.”

Sydney FC: Aaron LIDDELL (gk), Mitchell SPEER, Luke AUSTIN, Nathan SHERLOCK (c), David VRANKOVIC, Joel CHIANESE, Tommy CIRJAK, David GULLO, Brendan GAN, Wely AL-RIKABY, Justin HAYWARD, Georgio SPERENZA, Jared LUM, Kofi DANNING, Terry ANTONIS, Daniel NIZIC (gk).

Unavailable: Dimitri PETRATOS (calf), Blake POWELL (shin), Dylan MITCHELL (finger)