Ahead of his return to action tomorrow against the Newcastle Jets at ANZ Stadium, Ali Abbas has thanked the fans for their unwavering support during his road to recovery.
The Iraqi midfielder spent 405 days on the sideline following a serious knee injury and he says it was the support of the Sky Blues fans that helped spur him on to his Hyundai A-League return.
“It’s been a long long road but I’m happy we’re here now,” Abbas said.
“Hopefully I’ll make the fans happy and hopefully we can get the three points.
“I can’t thank the fans enough, they’ve been there for me since day one, they never stop messaging me and supporting me.
“I can’t thank them enough and as I said I’m so excited to play in front of them again and hopefully we’re going to see them all tomorrow and we will make them happy by sending them home with three points in their pocket.”
While some questioned whether Abbas would ever play again, he said that thought never crossed his mind as he revealed his disbelief when he found out he’d be featuring against the Newcastle Jets in Saturday’s double header.
“We’ve been working hard with Clarky and Elias and everyone involved, all the medical staff, we’ve been working really hard and I think I’m fully recovered and ready to go and play on the weekend,” he said.
“People said that [I may never be back] but I didn’t think that. I just trusted myself to fully recover and get back to it. It wasn’t crossing my mind not coming back and playing, now I’m here just to focus on the weekend.
“To be honest I couldn’t believe it [when I knew I’d be playing],” he continued.
“I didn’t sleep very well last night, it’s been a long time, hopefully everything is going to be good tomorrow.
“I have to forget everything [that happened in the past] and just focus on what the coach wants from us, to play the game and try to have fun.”
Sydney FC take on the Newcastle Jets in a Westfield W-League/Hyundai A-League double header at ANZ Stadium on Saturday 9 January. Tickets are still available, purchase yours today and be in attendance to cheer on the Sky Blues across two leagues.