After having new life injected into its Championship campaign on Sunday Sydney FC has received another boost today, with rising stars Rhyan Grant and Kofi Danning released from the Under-18 Australian team for this week’s Olympic Youth Festival and cleared to play in the Sky Blue’s season-defining clash with the Queensland Roar.
After having new life injected into its Championship campaign on Sunday Sydney FC has received another boost today, with rising stars Rhyan Grant and Kofi Danning released from the Under-18 Australian team for this week-s Olympic Youth Festival and cleared to play in the Sky Blue-s season-defining clash with the Queensland Roar.
The young duo played an integral part in helping Sydney to a 1-nil win over the Wellington Phoenix and they-re now free to make the trip to Brisbane this weekend as Sydney attempts to keep its slim finals hopes alive against one of the teams between it and a place in the playoffs.
“We-re extremely grateful to the FFA for releasing Rhyan and Kofi to take part in what is a crucial match for us in terms of our season,” said Sydney FC CEO, Stefan Kamasz. “Both players are great future prospects and I-m sure we-ll see plenty of them, not only for Sydney FC but also in Australian colours in the years to come.”
Plenty of attention has been focused on 17-year old Danning since he scored the winner against Wellington on Sunday but the likeable teenager is determined to keep a level head.
“It was amazing. To score the goal in your second game for Sydney FC is the best feeling,” said Danning. “I-m just here to do my job, to try and improve my skills and become a better player. The more games I play the more experience I-ll get and the better player I-ll become.”
For Grant, it-s been an equally impressive rise, and while the Youth League defender will now have to wait a little longer to wear the Green and Gold, the past year has been one to savour.
“I-ve come from living in Bathurst, back with my folks and then coming to NSWIS, AIS and now Sydney FC and that-s all been in the last year,” said the 17-year-old. “At times I do have to pinch myself, it feels like a dream.”
While Danning and Grant will no longer be taking part, Sydney FC will still be represented at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival, with Youth League player, Steve Lustica and regular Youth Team replacement, Kearyn Baccus selected in the squad for the tournament which will be played this week against teams from China, USA and Chile.
Sydney FC-s first team, including its two 17-year-old stars will attempt to narrow the gap on the Hyundai A-League top four when it faces the third-placed Queensland Roar at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday.