Jones hoping to bring leadership qualities to Socceroos squad

For one of the newest additions to the Subway Socceroos squad, representing his country of birth has been a long term ambition.

Gethin Jones was born in Perth in 1995 before he moved to Wales when he was young and made his way through the Welsh youth football setup.

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The Bolton defender explained his decision to play for Australia and how he felt when he got the call from Graham Arnold.

“I've always loved Australia, obviously, I was born in Perth, lived at a young age and then the family decided to move back to Wales,” he said.

“It's always been in the back of my mind to represent the country of birth, and then as soon as I got the phone call, asking for me to play for Australia, I was over the moon, and it was the right decision for me.

“It was just something I was very proud to tell my family that I got the call to represent Australia.”

Jones was being tracked by Graham Arnold and assistant coach Rene Meulensteen as the pair have been going to watch Bolton play a number of times this season.

Gethin Jones
Photo credit: Aleksandar Jason/Socceroos.

Jones said: “I've known Arnie and Rene have been coming to the games at Bolton for quite a few months now.

“It was a few months back, where Rene contacted me after a game, and I met up with Rene and then all of a sudden, I got the phone call from Arnie asking if I wanted to play for the Socceroos.”

In terms of position, Jones has said he is best is at right back, however he has experience across the backline and is willing to step in wherever he is needed.

“Over the years I have played multiple positions, especially at Bolton, I have played left wing back, left back, right centre back in a back three, and of course at right back as well, so, I'm versatile,” he said.

“But obviously my main position I'd say is right back, but as long as the manager puts me on the pitch, wherever he wants me to play I will give my 100%.”

When asked what it was like meeting a whole new group of teammates when he got to the Socceroos camp this week, Jones said it was a little daunting at first.

“I'm not going to lie, it is nerve wracking walking into a room with so many fresh faces, I only knew Harry Souttar before, but I've settled in really well,” he said.

“You can tell it is a proper family environment, the boys are all good, all the staff are brilliant, so whilst it can be nerve wracking for a newbie to come in, the environment makes you feel so welcome.

“I've only been here now three or four days and I'm really enjoying it, and I feel like I've settled in well, and I'll settle in even more, the more I'm here I'll get to know the lads even more on the training pitch.”

At Bolton, Jones is currently the club vice-captain and his leadership skills is something he feels he can impart on the Socceroos squad.

“I've been at Bolton for a few years now and I am vice-captain at Bolton, so I'm hoping to show my leadership skills on and off the pitch with the lads,” he said.

“For now, I'm hoping to repay the faith that they've shown in me to bring me into the squad and keep working out in training and hopefully do it in the games as well.”

Match Details

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Kick-off: 6.00pm local/1.00am AEDT (Sunday, 7 January)
Broadcast: Paramount+


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