Strong start continues for young Sydney star

A lot has happened in the life of Rhyan Grant in the last two years but things don’t look like slowing down for the rising Sydney FC star any time soon.

A lot has happened in the life of Rhyan Grant in the last two years but things don-t look like slowing for the teenager down any time soon.

The kid from country New South Wales earned a senior contract with Sydney FC after a standout 2008/09 season with the club-s Championship winning National Youth League team, and he-s now set his sights on securing a spot in Coach, Vitezslav Lavicka-s side.

“My first goal is to try and be in the team, whether it be starting or on the bench for the first couple of rounds and then try and cement a starting spot for the rest of the season,” said the talented 18-year old. “There-s a lot of confidence in the squad. Hopefully I can be involved with the first team most of the year and have a good season.”

It has been a rapid rise for Grant, who not so long ago was still playing football in Bathurst, before being recruited to the NSW Institute of Sport. The teenager has spent time in both defence and the midfield during Sydney FC-s pre-season campaign, and on Tuesday night sealed the Sky Blues- seventh-straight trial win with a last-minute goal against State Premier League leader, Sydney United.

“Vitja (Vitezslav Lavicka) spoke to me at the start of the season about where I-d like to play,” he explained. “I-d prefer to be in the midfield but if I-m needed at the back I-m happy to play there too, I-ll play wherever.”

Grant has also attracted the attention of national selectors, and along with fellow Sydney young-guns Matt Jurman and Kofi Danning spent much of May touring Europe with the Young Socceroos. He is firmly in the running to earn a place in the Australian side for the FIFA Under-20 World Cup, which will be contested in Egypt, starting September 24.

“It (the tour) was a great experience but I-m glad to be back training with Sydney,” said Grant. “It would be an awesome experience if I get to go (to the Cup). We-ve got a few more tours coming up before we go to Egypt so hopefully I-ll be selected for those tours and do well, then get picked in the final squad.

Grant will be back in action for Sydney FC this Saturday night when the Sky Blues play host to the North Queensland Fury in a highly-anticipated friendly at Shark Park, Cronulla.