Some of the new faces in the Ange Postecoglou's squad will be hoping to impress when the Socceroos meet up in Canberra next week ahead of their World Cup qualifier with Kyrgyzstan on November 12.
It might be the first time Risdon has made an official Socceroos squad but coach Ange Postecoglou has long be an admirer of the all-action right back.
Postecoglou selected the youngster as one of his “coach’s pick” in the A-League All-Stars squad against Manchester United in 2013.
And it was a night to remember for Risdon. A second-half substitute, the Perth Glory defender was on the field at full-time and was first on the scene to swap jerseys with United and Dutch superstar Robin van Persie. What a thrill !
Bunbury-born Risdon, whose parents Ray and Leanne drove up 1700km a week to pursue his dream of becoming a professional footballer, is a graduate of ECU Joondalup’s pathway program.
It’s a school that’s also produced other exceptional WA talent including Rhys Williams, Adam Taggart and Rostyn Griffiths.
Risdon was picked in the 46-man Socceroo squad late last year ahead of the Asian Cup - though not in the final squad - as further proof he's been on Ange's radar for some time.
It should probably come as no surprise the Albury-born defender has forged out a career as a professional footballer and graduated to the Socceroos squad. Sporting talent runs in the family.
Meredith’s father Greg was once-rated Australia’s top male squash player and was ranked among the top 10 in the world. It was only a knee injury which cut short his career back in the 1980’s.
But it’s always been football for Meredith, ever since he was spotted by Derby County as a teenager in Melbourne and was signed by the Rams’ academy outfit.
While he never played for Australia at Youth level, the 27-year-old has carved out an excellent career in the lower leagues of England to now sit on the cusp of his first Socceroo cap.
Cisak was actually born in Poland and moved to Australia at the age of two, with his family settling in Tasmania. His rise to the Socceroos makes him the first player from the Apple Isle since Dominic Longo in 1998 to make the green and gold squad.
The 26-year-old has been playing in the UK for eight years and has had an astonishing nine clubs in that time, including spells with Leicester City, Accrington Stanley, Portsmouth, Burnley and now League Two outfit Leyton Orient.
Interestingly, Cisak almost joined the Hyundai A-League with Melbourne Victory in 2011 but opted to stay in the UK instead and moved to Oldham Athletic, where he was one of three Australian gloveman on their books, including current Wanderers shot-stopper Dean Bouzanis.
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