In-form Miguel Di Pizio gearing up for Grand Final and U17 Asian Cup

At just 17 years of age, Miguel Di Pizio has already made his senior debut at the Central Coast Mariners, and has today been named in their squad for Saturday's A-League Men's Grand Final. 

It's been a prodigious rise for the Subway Joeys youngster, who traded Western Sydney Wanderers' academy for the Coast back in April, and immediately reaped the benefits. 

Establishing himself as one of Australia's next bright prospects, not only has he already featured in Australia's top flight, Di Pizio is building up some considerable form for Central Coast's NPL NSW outfit.

"It's been a real confidence booster in my career," Di Pizio said, reflecting on his last few weeks. 

"It's a milestone (debuting in the A-Leagues) and training with the first team has been great.

"I'm really grateful and can only thank the Mariners for giving me the opportunity." 

After helping the Mariners Academy side turn around a slow start to the season and register five-straight victories, the young forward is eager to carry his momentum into the AFC U17 Asian Cup which kicks off in Thailand later this month. 

READ MORE: Glasson: Making the AFC U17 Asian Cup squad would be a 'dream come true'
READ MORE: How to watch Australia at the AFC U-17 Asian Cup Thailand 2023™

Di Pizio has been part of the Joeys' setup throughout their entire journey over the last 12 months, from a tough run of results at the AFF U16 Youth Championships in Indonesia to qualifying for the Asian Cup on home soil with three-straight victories in Shepparton. 

"I think we've made a real turnaround from Indonesia, where we didn't go quite as well," he reflects.

We've just transitioned into a really dominant team, and I think the one of the powerhouses in Asia to watch out for." 

While his immediate focus may lie on taking a place amongst the substitutes at Saturday's A-League Men's decider in Parramatta, Di Pizio can't wait to reunite with his national team in the coming weeks. 

"I'm always grateful and it's a big pleasure playing for your country no matter what," he enforced.

"I'm just looking to help the team win, give the boy some confidence out there, obviously hold my own and hopefully grab a couple of goals and assists." 

A top four finish in Thailand would see Di Pizio and the Subway Joeys qualify for the FIFA U17 World Cup, which is taking place later this year. 

Brad Maloney's side kick off their tournament against Saudi Arabia on June 16, with every match featuring Australia available to stream live and free via 10 Play. 

READ MORE: Sutherland confident Joeys will give strong account of themselves

AFC U17 Asian Cup Thailand 2023™ - Australia's Group Stage Match Schedule

Australia v Saudi Arabia
Date: Friday, 16 June 2023
Venue: Chonburi Stadium, Chonburi
Kick-off: 5:00pm local, 8:00pm (AEST)

China PR v Australia
Date: Monday, 19 June 2023
Venue: Chonburi Stadium, Chonburi
Kick-off: 5:00pm local, 8:00pm (AEST)

Tajikistan v Australia
Date: Thursday, 22 June 2023
Venue: Rajamangala National Stadium, Bangkok
Kick-off: 5:00pm local, 8:00pm (AEST)

To see the AFC U-17 Asian Cup Thailand 2023™ Match Schedule CLICK HERE.