After returning for pre-season, vice-captain Josh Risdon says the feeling he had after lifting last season’s A-League Men Championship trophy is all the motivation he needs to do it again in 22/23.
“For myself to achieve that (Championship win) for the first time in my career was amazing. The feeling I had for the whole off-season was incredible and made me want to come back and do it all again,” Risdon said.
Risdon and his Western United teammates returned to training on Monday, with the squad motivated to replicate the success of 21/22.
“Everyone’s excited to get back into it. From what we did last year, everyone’s keen to do it again. There’s a buzz at training and everyone’s come back in good nick and hit the ground running. Everyone’s committed to doing well again this season.”
United’s first official match of the new season is just three weeks away, with the Green and Black set to face cross-town rivals Melbourne Victory in the Australia Cup Round of 32, and it’s a test Risdon is looking forward to.
“We know that we have a cup game in less than a month so we’ve all made sure we have come back in good shape to be ready for that.
“We need to focus on getting in every day and working hard and living our values. We enjoy being together, and I think that’s what made us so successful last year, being such a tight-knit group and the culture we created.”
With a majority of Western’s championship-winning team returning for 22/23, Risdon believes the team will be able to pick up where they left off.
“We’ve kept a majority of the squad together which is awesome, and we can pick up where we left off. But we’ve created a culture where any new signings that come in will feel welcome and we know they will buy into the values of the club.”