Calls for Central Coast defender Trent Sainsbury to be selected for the Qantas Socceroos are premature, according to former Sydney FC defender Mark Rudan.
Calls for Central Coast Mariners defender Trent Sainsbury to be selected for the Qantas Socceroos are premature, according to former Sydney FC defender Mark Rudan.
Sainsbury, 20, has impressed in the early stages of the Hyundai A-League season, stepping in to the fill the gap left by former Mariners skipper Alex Wilkinson with aplomb.
With next week's friendly against Korea Republic and the qualifiers for the East Asian Cup later in the year, Sainsbury-s form has caught the attention of those who believe more young players should be given a chance at Socceroos level.
But while Rudan admitted he was an admirer of the young centreback, he said the Mariners youngster still has a great deal to learn before progressing to the national team set-up.
“Wilko leaving left a big hole and some thought the Mariners wouldn-t be able to cover it,” Rudan told a-league.com.au.
“But Trent-s come in and done a wonderful job. He-s lucky that he-s got a wonderful defence around him in Pedj Bojic, Josh Rose, Matty Ryan - and Patrick Zwaanswijk, who has been the best defender over the past two years. With his guidance and experience I don-t think Trent-s missed a beat.
“Trent-s put in some fantastic performances so far - but we-re only five games in; he-s got to put a run of games together and he hasn-t done that yet.
“That-s not to say Trent won-t have time in the national set-up but defenders usually get better with age; I-d like to see him put a good full season in or even a year or two before being called up.”
Instead, Rudan said he would rather other fringe players were given a shot at the national team in the upcoming national team fixtures.
“We-ve seen a bit of Matthew Spiranovic, and I-d like Luke DeVere get a chance. He-s been playing solidly over in Korea and he-s playing in a tougher competition, playing more games. He had a sensational year prior to leaving Australia and he-s been playing week in week out.
“The attacking players should also be given a chance - I-d love to see Tommy Rogic be given an opportunity, along with Aaron Mooy.
"The young boys fluctuate with their form and higher up the park you can forgive a couple of mistakes here and there because they-ve got another line of defence behind them.
“Mooy and Rogic, in particular, deserve that chance; they-re as good as any other midfielders in the competition right now and I believe if you-re good enough you-re old enough.”
Nabbout's 'dream' debut draws closer
Andrew Nabbout is on the verge of fulfilling a football dream he's held his whole life. The pacy front-man's sensational season with the Newcastle Jets has resulted in not only a Caltex Socceroos call-up, but also a move to Japanese giants Urawa Red Diamonds. It's been a re
Leckie pleased with 'modern' Van Marwijk's Caltex Socceroos plans
Key winger Mathew Leckie has embraced the encouraging early evidence of new coach Bert van Marwijk's plans for the Caltex Socceroos. In his first camp in charge, Van Marwijk has laid the foundations for the upcoming FIFA World Cup campaign by urging the use of quick, crisp pas
Rukavytsya ready to relive 'unbelievable' World Cup experience
Caltex Socceroos striker Nikita Rukavytsya is hoping history repeats itself as he zeroes in on an unexpected FIFA World Cup berth. The 30-year-old flyer was a surprise recall for last year's do-or-die play-offs against Syria and Honduras having spent the previous four years in
Opponent Watch: Celtic starlet set to lock horns with Rogic
Tom Rogic's superb form could hit a grinding halt in Oslo if a Celtic team-mate has his way in the international friendly between the Caltex Socceroos and Norway. Elsewhere, Colombia are set to have some additional motivation for next week's match in London while a FIFA World