JETS captain Ruben Zadkovich can’t wait to get into the A League season.
The league’s off season is one of the longest in any sport or league in the country, with some teams playing up to 10 games before the season starts.
Zadkovich dominated play in Tamworth Sunday when the Jets beat the Mariners 2-1 at Scully Park,. He and Michael Bridges created plenty of chances along with right winger James Virgili and Scott Neville.
“I felt quite good and tidy out there. I am feeling pretty fresh and am anxious to get into the season,” Zadkovich said after the game.
The defensive midfielder was the “go-to” man in the middle for the Jets, and the former Notts County player controlled the speed of the game well and distributed the ball from the middle with precision.
Two first half goals to Craig Goodwin off the back of some persistent attack put the Jets in front early and saw Zadkovich drop back a little bit more to stem the Mariners who started to find their feet and their passes in the second half.
“We looked quite good early on and were very dangerous down both sides,” Zadkovich said.
“They changed tactics and made it harder in the second half which is something we will have to improve.”
The Jets had to change their usual tactics after star strikers Emile Heskey and Nathan Burns were ruled out with injury.
Young winger Scott Neville stepped up and was finding loads of space both down the wing and in front of the goal with dangerous crosses.
“We have a lot of pace out wide and are very skilful there,” Zadkovich said.
“After we lost those players we needed to find different ways to exploit them and I think we did that well.”
Zadkovich was in awe of the playing surface at Scully Park, and how the town treated the visitors, especially after the club turned the sprinklers on before the game and at half time.
“It is a top surface and with that bit of water the ball really zips off it.” “It is brilliant in Tamworth and I love to come here because we get treated so well.”
The captain believes the arrangement the Jets have to play here each year is very important and said that more events like this should happen.
Zadkovich was a special guest at the Northern Inland Football presentation night on Saturday and was amazed at the attitude and talent of the young players.
“We should be doing everything we can to keep these young players involved in the game.”
The Jets open the A League season on Friday, October 11 when they travel to Sydney to take on FC Sydney.