Socceroos enjoy Adelaidean persuasion

Adelaide United duo Craig Goodwin and Stephan Mauk’s selection in the Socceroos squad to face England on May 27 in Sunderland, is a recognition for their form in this season’s A-League said Socceroos boss Ange Postecoglou.

In terms of achieving your goals in a short space of time, Goodwin has achieved a rare footballing hat trick.

In the last two weeks the 24-year-old won a Grand Final in his hometown, signed a European contract and was recalled to the Socceroos squad after a near two-year absence.

While for Mauk, 20, this has been a breakout season.

The midfielder was a key figure in the Reds march to winning an A-League double after mainly being a bit-part player for Melbourne City.

It was the Adelaide stars impressive performances at the back end of the A-League season that swayed Postecoglou into selecting them for the Socceroos squad to face England.

“From my perspective I think the finals concept in Australia is a good indicator how people handle pressure, he said. “And I think both them performed really well in the finals series.”

“When you do well in finals series it shows that your game stands up in the pressure of knockout football, which international football is pretty much that kind of football.”

The Australian national team boss also admitted that the versatility of Goodwin was also a factor in making the Socceroos squad.

“That probably is the reason why he has been selected, he is fairly flexible,” he said. 

“It’s not just him I think Stephan Mauk has got versatility in him. I’m kind of looking for players who can play in more than one position. That’s how the team plays. 

“We are trying to move more and more away from guys who can just sort of play set positions, because that is not the way that the team is playing and evolving.

“I’m hoping (Goodwin’s) versatility and the fact that he can pay in a defensive position or attacking position is something that we can draw upon in the nation team. 

“I don’t see him as a one or the other. Hopefully he grows into an international footballer that can provide us options for when we play against different types of opposition.”

Regarding Goodwin’s signing with Eredivise side Sparta Rotterdam, Postecoglou doesn’t see the move as evidence to suggest that playing in Europe is the only way you can get a call up to the Socceroos

“Craig has had a fantastic season and obviously he wants to try himself in another league and in Europe which is great,” he said. 

“He is going to now face a different challenge and it’s up to him to make that move a success. Again I don’t think that needs to be a vindication or validation of the domestic competition.

“I’ve said all along that A-League is a good competition it stands up well against a lot of leagues around the world. And we’ve seen that because players who’ve come into the national team perform fantastically well at international level even though they are playing in the A-League.

“More recognition will come as more players get more game time particularly at international level through the A-League. From my perspective the more important thing is what they do with that opportunity.”