Defender Jon McKain has been named Adelaide United’s captain for the upcoming Hyundai A-League season.
Defender Jon McKain has been named Adelaide United-s captain for the upcoming Hyundai A-League season.
McKain-s appointment as the player who will lead the Reds into battle for season seven was announced by Head Coach Rini Coolen at the club-s Gala Dinner tonight.
While stating there were a number of possible candidates for the role, Coolen said that based on the characteristics the club was looking for in deciding on the best person to lead the team on the field, McKain proved the ideal fit.
“I think it-s a very important job, one that brings a lot of responsibility with it and there were a number of things that were in important in considering the choice of captain,” Coolen said.
“Number one, the player had to tick all of the boxes and we knew that Jon McKain is here to be one of the leaders in our team.”
“We took time in the last weeks to have a look at it and how the group reacts to Jon being with us, and it was quickly confirmed as the players showed they highly respect him and the person he is, and that-s the way we as coaches see him as well.”
“He is a great professional, a natural leader, his position on the field as a central defender is an important one, and together with the mentality and experience he has, he ticks all of the boxes.”
“On top of that he is also an Australian player, so all of those things led to Jon being the ideal person to be our captain for the upcoming season.”
Being given the duty to lead the Reds and wear the captain-s armband is a privilege McKain humbly accepts.
“Obviously first of all it-s an honour to be considered to captain this side and I know what this football club means to the people of Adelaide, they-re very passionate supporters and it has got a big following,” McKain said.
“You just have to look at our squad and the quality we have got in every position, there-s depth and guys fighting for positions, and we-ve talked about it amongst the group what we want to do this season, so it-s an honour for me and we all can-t wait to get started.”
McKain-s selection comes after the Brisbane born defender held the position of vice-captain at a number of his previous clubs, including his time at the Wellington Phoenix and during his stints in Saudi Arabia and Romania.
The 28 year old with 16 Qantas Socceroos appearances to his name says the added responsibility of the captaincy is something he is confident he can handle.
“It sits with me fine and I-m comfortable with it,” McKain said.
“I-m not going to change my game too much, I-ll play as I always do and we-re lucky that we-ve got a lot of experienced guys in the team as well that other guys can go to, but I-ll just keep doing what I-ve been doing at training and hopefully set a good example for the boys and we can push each other because I think if you look across every team in the Hyundai A-League, there-s quality there and the little things really make a difference, so I-m confident we-ve got a very good squad and hopefully we have a good year.”
Further to the announcement of McKain as captain, Coolen also revealed goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic and reigning Club Champion Cassio as the club-s vice-captains.
“Cassio is our number three (behind McKain and Galekovic), that-s if you can give it a number as a vice-captain,” Coolen said.
“He is a very highly respected person in our group and it is good to have him as a vice-captain.”
“With Eugene, it is similar to last season in that we prefer to have a field player rather than a goalkeeper as the captain. Eugene understands this and is happy with the position, and he will be the captain if Jon is not there, which is what he deserves.”
McKain will have his first chance to lead the Reds when Adelaide United meets Gold Coast United in a pre season match at Hindmarsh Stadium on Friday 9 September 2011. Tickets for the match are available now through www.ticketek.com.au.