Pressure for places driving Golec

Having made his first Hyundai A-League appearance in two months, Adelaide United FC defender Antony Golec does not plan on giving up his spot any time soon.

Having made his first Hyundai A-League appearance in two months, Adelaide United FC defender Antony Golec does not plan on giving up his spot any time soon.

Reds Coach John Kosmina gave Golec the nod to replace the injured Nigel Boogaard in the heart of defence against the Newcastle Jets last Saturday and the 194cm stopper was not going to let the opportunity slip.

Golec, together with defensive partner Iain Fyfe, helped guide the Reds to a clean sheet at Hunter Stadium in what was his first game since Round 5 against Brisbane Roar.

A corked thigh against the Roar halted Golec-s positive start to Season 8 and he has since been made to bide his time for a chance at a recall with Fyfe and Boogaard left with the responsibility of leading the Reds- defence.

But a hamstring injury to Boogaard opened the door for Golec and with the knowledge of how tight it is for spots in the team, he is determined to make every game count.

“It felt good to be back out there,” Golec said.

“It-s never the best missing out sitting in the stands, but I enjoyed it on Saturday, it could have been a better result but we came away with a clean sheet and as a defender I-m happy with that.”

At 22 years of age, Golec is the youngest of the Reds- four central defensive options that includes him, Boogaard, Fyfe and Jon McKain.

Four players vying for two positions does not calculate, and Golec is using this pressure for spots as added motivation to not give Kosmina a reason to change things up at the back.

“This is my chance and I-ve got to make the most of it,” Golec said.

“It-s never easy but I-m playing now so I-ve got to take my chance and hopefully when they-re all fit I-ve done enough to keep my spot.”

“There is pressure…it was unfortunate how I got back in with Boogaard getting injured, but whenever a player gets their chance they-ve got to play well, especially here because everyone is capable of doing a very good job in their position, so you-ve got to make the most of the chance you get.”

Now with his foot in the door, Golec will get no better test to prove his worth than on Friday night when Perth Glory and star striker Shane Smeltz come to town.

One of the Hyundai A-League-s greatest ever marksmen, Smeltz scored a brace in Perth-s 2-2 draw with Sydney FC last weekend, sending ominous signs he is back to his best.

As tough as the assignment of stopping Smeltz looms, after managing to contain Jets marquee striker Emile Heskey on Saturday, Golec is looking forward to another massive challenge.

“Every game is hard and this will be just as hard. It-s a home game and we want to win…we didn-t get the result in Newcastle and we want to stay in touch with the Central Coast,” Golec said.

“Smeltzy is a good player, he scored two goals on the weekend and people say because he hasn-t scored in awhile that he-s not going that well, but all it took was two chances and he took them, so I think we-re going to have to keep him quiet and make sure we don-t give him a sniff at goal.”

Tickets for the match against the Glory are available through Ticketek.