Kovacevic Eyes First Senior Start

Aug 31, 2019 by

Emerging Brisbane Strikers talent Danilo Kovacevic says he is eagerly awaiting the challenge of his senior starting debut this weekend.

The 16-year-old midfielder will become the latest of Brisbane Strikers’ young guns to be given his chance to shine in the senior side against Western Pride on Saturday night.

The match marks the fifth-placed Brisbane Strikers final league clash of the season and their final competitive match before their upcoming FFA Cup Quarter Final in mid-September.

Kovacevic, who has been with Brisbane Strikers since Under 15’s, has previously appeared as a substitute for Owen Baker’s side in both the National Premier Leagues and FFA Cup competitions this season.

After shining brightly in the Under 20’s team throughout the year, Kovacevic said he will savor the experience of his first start in senior football on Saturday night.

“I am buzzing to be starting and I’m feeling confident about the game,” Kovacevic explained.

“I’ve played a few matches this year off the bench and I’ve experienced how the game is quicker and more physical in the senior team compared to the Under 20’s.”

He added, “Western Pride are obviously out to avoid relegation. I have never played against a team in that position before and it will be a good challenge.”

Asked what the Brisbane Strikers supporters can expect to see from him on the pitch, Kovacevic said he seeks to bring creativity to his midfield role.

“I like to play the ball around, find the killer passes and I feel I have the speed where I can burn a player when I need to,” he explained.

“I can shoot in and around the box but I’m not really the one to score goals – I prefer making the assists.”

“But I also always feel up for a battle, making a challenge for the ball, and I’m looking forward to that part of the game too.”

While drawing lessons from the entire squad this year, he identified the senior players that have inspired him throughout the season.

“I look at how Jake McLean and Scott Halliday play – on and off the ball – and the way they work hard for the team. That’s something I’ve really noticed.”

Kovacevic explained that Brisbane Strikers’ demonstrated pathway to senior football was a significant factor in his decision to join the club’s junior ranks in 2016.

“I came to Strikers because I saw great coaches and I also saw young players getting the chance to play in the senior team,” he explained.

“In the Under 20’s we train with and alongside the seniors often and it is a very good environment to be in.”

“It helps us to learn from the older, experienced players and gives you the confidence in your own game.”

And while he balances the demands of high school with his football development, Kovacevic said he club provides the guidance and support he needs at this stage of his life.

“It’s important to take everything into consideration – how you eat, your sleep patterns and time management – it all helps to becoming a better player and managing the stress of school assignments,” he concluded.

Kovacevic is among a raft of Under 20’s players to take steps into senior football this season including Cade McDermott, Tana Entrop, Aidan Bender, Lachlan Smith and Tomi Mesaric.

MATCH DETAILS

National Premier Leagues Queensland
Round 30

Brisbane Strikers v Western Pride
Saturday, August 31 @ 6:00PM
Perry Park, Bowen Hills

FREE ENTRY

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