Sydney United 58’s Arjen Robben look-alike Matthew Sim knows what it takes to win crucial deciders as the Reds venture down South where they’ll face the might of the Wollongong Wolves at Albert Butler Memorial Park.
Sim has found his groove in more ways than one during the reboot of the National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s season as he and his fellow teammates set their sights on a Grand Final ticket this Sunday.
“We have played in lots of close games with the Wolves in the past few years, they are a positive team who go on the front foot , but we have been here before so we know what is required.
“They have some obvious threats going forward, but we have the quality to make it difficult for them in that area of the pitch – we too have been solid going forward the other way so its going to be a quality match full of excitement that’s for sure.”
Sydney United 58 temporarily led the NPL NSW Men’s Premiership race during the final round but victory for Rockdale Ilinden all but secured their silverware much to the disappointment of Sim.
“Of course it would have been nice to finish on top and clinch the Premiership, we had a few slips up on the way and we knew it was going to be tight come the end of the season, we didn’t do enough at the end of the day.
“We still have an opportunity to claim some silverware with the Championship Title at stake but it all starts this Sunday as we hope we can get to the big dance first, taking out the Wolves in the process which by no means will be an easy match.”
The year itself has proved to be a healthy challenge for the former A-Leaguer as after the season recommenced once again following the COVID lockdown, the club also saw a new coach at the helm in Anthony Crea due to Zeljko Kalac signing in Greece following Tony Popovic forming part of the coaching staff at Xanthi FC.
“It has just been positive to be able to get back out there and get some sort of a season in.
“The thought of no football for the whole season would have been devastating for the football community and given the situation in other states, we are very lucky to have been able to play.
“Different teams have taken different approaches but for us just being able to play and enjoy our football again has been great.
“Having Ant (Anthony Crea) and a few others around behind the scenes has been great. Ant has been to the top of the game and seen it all, he knows how to get us ready for the big moments. We have been training for the finals since the end of last year so we are ready to go.”
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