Sydney United 58 forward Patrick Antelmi believes his side is set to surprise during the National Premier Leagues NSW finals series and is confident he can be an X-Factor for them whenever he take the field.
Antelmi made the move to Edensor Park this season after a year on the South Coast with Wollongong Wolves.
While the winger-cum-striker has not registered the consistent starts he would have hoped for, a solid return of eight goals this campaign proves he still knows his way to goal.
“It has been a decent season for me individually but It’s still below where I would’ve like to have reached,” he said.
“Every game I have given my best and I feel like I have fit in well at United 58 which boast such a strong group of players.
“Competition for starting positions is so tough and some weeks the coach may have a different idea to how he wants to play you which may not match up with how you feel you can make the best contribution.
“It is important in those moments to put the team first and do everything you can to make a positive impact when you get given a chance”
An FFA Cup breakout star during his time with Blacktown City, including scoring key goals to dump his current team United 58 out of the Cup in 2016, Antelmi hopes his goals will this time lead The Reds to glory.
“Finals football is a different beast with so much more riding on every game,” he said.
“Throughout my career I believe I have been able to lift my game when the pressure is on and it has helped me play some of my best football in big matches.
The 24-year-old has found the back of the net in United 58’s last two matches against preliminary semi-final opponents APIA Leichhardt and is sure to create plenty of headaches for the Tigers defence on Saturday.
While Antelmi said he would love to score against APIA again this week, the main focus is getting the win as United 58 sets out for revenge after going down 6-2 at Lambert Park in Round 20.
“Our last clash wasn’t great for us and APIA just had one of those days where everything they touched turned to gold,” Antelmi said.
“I’m pretty confident it will be a very different story this time around.
“APIA are a very dangerous team and we have experienced first hand what they can do if we’re not at our best.
“In saying that I think we have the players to be a real contender for the Championship and Saturday is our first chance to prove that and make our mark.”