Darcy's Green and Gold dream

After winning the Australian section of the Nike Most Wanted competition, Rockdale City Suns youth midfielder Darcy Burgess says his ultimate dream is to wear the Green and Gold and share the field with his brother Max.

His older brother Max, 20, is part of Sydney FC’s youth set-up and has played seven senior A-League games.

But 17-year-old Darcy, who started to play football because he wanted to be like his big brother, may one day surpass his older sibling and follow in former Nike Chance winner and now Socceroo Tom Rogic’s footsteps.

Burgess said winning the Australian leg of the football talent search along with 18-year-old goalkeeper Domenic Nascimben was the greatest moment in his career.

“A childhood dream has been to play in a World Cup with Australia alongside my brother Max,” he said.

“Winning Nike Most Wanted Australia is probably my best and biggest football achievement. In my short career, I haven't been a part of many winning teams. . I just hope I can take it that one step further.

“I have watched all the Nike Academy videos from the start and I always imagined what it would be like, being selected. It was a feeling I'll never forget.”

The Australian trial of the Nike Most Wanted competition was held in Melbourne earlier in the year and is part of Nike’s global football talent search that gives young unsigned players an opportunity to get noticed and join the Nike Academy in the UK.

Burgess said the experience initially produced a few moments of mental strain but once he relaxed he was able to enjoy the competition.

“It was a little bit nerve-racking,” he said. “Once I arrived the nerves calmed down. It was an amazing experience, and an amazing set-up, with the coaches and the facilities.

“The professionalism of the whole trial was insane and that definitely stood out for me. All in all it was a fantastic day which was competitive in a really good way.”

Along with Rogic, former Australian winners include Brisbane Roar midfielder Devante Clut, Young Socceroo Dejan Pandurevic and Adam Edgar - who recently signed for English Championship side Huddersfield Town.

Burgess said that Rogic’s achievement in 2011 was his inspiration.

“Just to see someone like Tom Rogic who was unheard of before winning his competition of the Nike Most Wanted is proof enough that there is a lot of talent out there,” he said.

“And there are plenty that have yet to be discovered. Competitions like this can give young players another avenue and chance in chasing their dream.” 

Former Socceroo Josh Kennedy, who was one of the judges of the Australian competition, said that Burgess’ composure on the ball and his athleticism were two of the key aspects of his game that impressed him the most.

“Darcy was technically very smooth and looked extremely fit, he said. “His ability to break up play was quite clear once the 11v 11 started.

“I think he had great engines for a holding midfielder while always seeming to keep the ball under pressure and make good decisions.

“During all of the 11 v 11 games I don't think we could fault him once with a bad decision or bad pass, which was impressive considering the long hot day all the boys had put themselves through.”