Glory defender Risdon happy living on the edge

Josh Risdon can only guess if Australia coach Ange Postecoglou has him in his plans for critical World Cup qualifying games that begin in September, but the Perth Glory defender said living on the edge was fine with him.


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It is clearly Postecoglou’s way to not let any player think he is a “lock” when it comes to selection and he and the team have succeeded with that mentality. Risdon told The World Game that tactic agreed with him because he didn’t want to risk getting comfortable.

“That’s the way Ange likes to go about it and it’s a good way to go about it,” Risdon said. “It keeps everyone on their toes and performing at their highest level. It gets the best out of everyone because you can’t assume anything. I know I don’t.”

Right-back Risdon, who will turn 24 on 27 July, has been a part of the Socceroos squad for each of their last seven games.


He was on the bench but not used in a World Cup qualifier against Kyrgyzstan and then made his debut as a starter in the next WC game, against Bangladesh. Next he was on the bench, not used, against Tajikistan, before starting against Jordan in Sydney.

In the three friendlies the Socceroos have played since then, Risdon started against England and was on the bench, not used, in both games against Greece.

So he has had regular recent involvement, but at the same Postecoglou has continued to look at other players as well. Australia will next play a qualifier against Iraq at Glory’s home ground, nib Stadium, on September 1.

Asked if he felt he had made the most of his Socceroos opportunities so far, in games and at training, Risdon replied: “Yeah, the three games I’ve had and the training in camp, I feel I’ve done quite well, but I guess that’s ultimately up to the boss to decide.

“If f I get called up for the next game, that would be awesome, but I’m trying not to look too much into it at this stage. I’m still in pre-season and a few of the other boys in the Socceroos would have started their season by the time the next camp is on.

“I’m just focusing on pre-season and we’ve got a good trip coming up with Glory so I’m just aiming to get myself nice and fit and get some good minutes into my legs and if I’m called up for Australia I’ll really look forward to it.”

Perth will leave on Monday for a 10-day trip to the Philippines, where they will play three games.

“Yeah, we’re looking forward to that, three games including one against the Philippines national team,” Risdon said. “It will be a good hit-out for us. We’ve been preparing well the last few weeks, so it should be a good trip.”

Glory had a tremendous second half of last season that propelled them into the finals. They weren’t able to go on with it from there, but there is a realistic ambition within the club of being able to push hard right from the start of next season.

“We were down where Adelaide were as well at one point of the season,” Risdon said. “They kicked on and we really kick-started our own season over Christmas. We got a few new players in and got on a really good roll towards the end there.

“We’re full of confidence after that and the club has only made the squad stronger with some more good recruiting, so everyone has been pumped up to get back into it at pre-season training and we’re looking forward to playing competitive games again, starting with the FFA Cup.”

Perth coach Kenny Lowe has been signed long-term as well, which provides stability after the club went through a period in which there was a quick turnover of coaches before he took charge.

“I’ve seen a few coaches here at Glory in my time, so it’s good to see Kenny is locked down for a few more years,” Risdon said. “He’s a great coach and he’s got the respect of the players and he makes the players want to play for him.”

Risdon captained Perth on many occasions during the second half of last season. He isn’t sure if he’ll be called upon again to fill that role next season, but he said he enjoyed the experience.

“It wasn’t really something I pictured myself doing,” he said. “But our regular captain, Richie Garcia, had a few injuries last season so Kenny gave me the armband and I really enjoyed that role and I felt it added a lot to my game and helped me mature as a person as well as a player.

“I’m happy to do it again in the future, but Richie is a great mentor and great captain at the club so I’m sure he’ll still be first choice next season.”

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5 min read
Published 16 July 2016 at 3:16pm
By Greg Pritchard