Top line summary

  • Midfield switch has helped him settle
  • Grateful for manager's faith
  • Learning 'ugly side of the game' in Scotland
  • Positive talks on potential Australia call-up

How much more comfortable do you feel compared to when you arrived?

“Yeah, a lot more comfortable. That comes with time, I don’t think it’s a personal thing, it’s a general thing of players taking time to settle and gel into the team. I think I have done that. The switch has helped. I am happy to play centre half or midfield, it’s wherever the team needs me and I am just happy to give my all."

You've mentioned the manager's full faith in you before, it must be a great thing walking into a club know you already have that?

“It just puts belief in me personally. You can see it in my game, I am playing with confidence and knowing the gaffer trusts me in what I am doing. He didn’t have to sell the move, it goes both ways. It was a great fit for me and for the club. It’s a good model here and I fit well into the team. I am getting out of what I hoped I would, 100 per cent. It’s a great league and a good standard. And as a young player I am learning off the more experienced players and picking up stuff every day.

Did you play midfield as a kid?

“I was more of an attacking player growing up, I didn’t play in midfield until I was 16 or 17. But then someone put me on a stretcher and I grew too much! They put me back to centre half."

How would you describe your relationship with the manager, going way back?

“My relationship with the manager has always been positive, it has always been good. He has always been good for me and I can't thank him enough for the belief and trust he puts in me. The way he does that for everybody, he is a great manager and a great man. He’s a great manager so I could always see clubs here would be after him. And the job he did with Central Coast Mariners, it was only a matter of time before someone looked to snap him up."

What is it about British football that makes it such a lure for Australian players?

“It’s an attractive style of play. The top end footballers in the world are all in England and Europe and the UK. So it’s an aspiration for most Australian players. And not just them. I think players all over the world look at the English and Spanish leagues and you can tell looking at the Champions League they are the best. Once I came to the UK you speak more and more to players and start to learn the leagues and how things work and what they involve. I was attracted to it which is why I came here."

You say you've already learned a lot since coming here, what sticks out most?

“It’s a very aerial and physical game and I have learned a lot from that aspect, how to deal with balls in the air, crosses, the ugly side of the game. Players here have experienced that for many years and are streetwise. All these little things help me develop as a player and as a young player you want to get better and better each and every day."

You came in for your debut on a difficult day for the club against St Mirren, how was it for you?

“Yeah it was a tough start for me and we had a run of games where we didn’t have a positive result. But you can’t let that tear you down and affect you in the long term. You need to get on with it and you can see now we’re undefeated in the last five. It was an eye opener, not just personally but as a team that was a game to reflect on and sort of draw the line, to say things need to be better. And it looks like we have picked things up.”

Have you had any conversations about an international call-up?

“We’ve had general conversations about how I am and how I am doing at this club. It’s positive, but I can’t say too much."