Manly United’s Luca Kmet has really embraced the challenge given to him ever since the rebooted National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s competition kicked into gear in late July this year.
The 21-year-old has seized the opportunity of gaining much needed game time putting him in good stead as one of the success stories of the 2020 season.
“It’s great to be back playing this year especially after some doubt that the season wouldn’t go ahead because of COVID.
“I’ve had great support from Steve and the physio team at Manly after my injury, and the reboot has helped me get back into the full swing of things.
“I came to Manly United last year after getting a call from Paul Dee and knowing that if I put my head down and worked hard, I would get an opportunity to play first grade. That’s the type of club Manly are and that’s giving a number of young players a chance.
“My focus is to continue to build on my first-grade experience by working hard, but also making sure I can contribute to the team’s objectives and performances as much as possible.”
The Northern Beaches club have unearthed a few young players like Kmet with James Georgaklis, Jordan Devries, Lachlan McGrath and Jamie Glover all getting senior game time putting them in good stead for the 2021 NPL NSW Men’s season.
Round 7 saw a flurry of goals take centre stage at Cromer Park as Manly United defeated APIA Leichhardt FC 5-2 with Kmet joining the party scoring his second for the year.
A sign of many more goals and wins perhaps?
“It was great to get the win last weekend.
“APIA are a tough side to play against and having played them in a trial before the reboot, we knew they were competitive.
“I felt all the boys did really well together and in particular we were able to execute in front of goal getting the win we really needed.”
In what’s been described as a local derby, Manly United will take on the North Shore Mariners at Cromer Park on Friday evening, something the young attacker is eagerly anticipating.
“I really can’t wait to get out and play especially on a Friday night under lights at Cromer.
“I think this a bit of a first as a derby for both clubs so I’m sure it’s going to be a really competitive game and one the team are really looking forward to.
“Hopefully we can pick up the three points and further progress up the competition ladder.”
Kmet and co have had to transition slightly in the coaching department as well admired manager Paul Dee departed two weeks ago with the job going to assistant Adam Griffiths.
“It’s been a good transition.
“Manly United is a very professional club and have made the transition really smooth.
“For me personally it’s great to have Griff as head coach, I think he knows my game really well and that’s important.
“As an attacking player, his focus on taking chances when we go forward has really suited my style of play.”
Away from Football, Kmet keeps himself busy studying, working as well as coaching the Manly United Under 8’s Development squad.
“I’m currently at UTS studying a Bachelor of Business (Accounting) and I’m also working part-time in finance and admin at North Shore Private Hospital.
“Before training nights I also coach the Manly United Under 8’s Development squad so I do what I can to keep myself busy every single day.”
Kemt kicked off his football development in the Nation’s Capital, Canberra, having first registered for the very proud Canberra FC formerly Deakin club which led him to some amazing experiences including a trial with Croatian giants Dinamo Zagreb to name a few.
“Most of my youth development took place in Canberra, and I’ve made some great memories there.
“I played all my juniors there for Canberra FC and had some great Croatian background coaches that really taught and encouraged technical ability and competitiveness.
“It also led me to some experience trailing at Dinamo Zagreb when I was 12.
“I had the chance to play at the National Football Championships for ACT in both football and futsal with what was a really good group of players.”