Get To Know: Mark Rudan

Each week we’re asking the important questions as we profile Sydney FC’s Team of the Decade and former players. Find out who their funniest team mate was, what their favourite away trip was, who they believe was the worst dancer at the club and more!

How did it feel to be named in Sydney FC’s Team of the Decade?

I was very honoured and privileged to be named in the Team of the Decade, especially when you consider some of the names who have played for the club.  It was a real honour to be standing there among those players.

Who is your all time favourite player in your position?

Franco Baresi.  He was someone I watched extensively during the 80’s and 90’s.  He was the complete defender for me.

Funniest team mate?

Sasho Petrovski was a barrel of laughs.  He was always in good spirits in the dressing room and just the way he acted and the things he said were hilarious.

Best mate(s) at the club?

Ufuk Talay. We roomed together from the start and played Young Socceroos together.  We are still great mates now.

Who do you still keep in touch with?

Ufuk Talay is the person I keep in touch with the most. I see a bit of David Zdrilic through our media work and have known him from Sydney United days.  I also see Bimbi and Clint Bolton now and again.

Best away game memory/story?

Head Coach Pierre Littbarski once had us playing a game where we had to sit next to each other and name a place in NSW.  The person next to you would need to name a surburb which started with the last letter of the suburb you had mentioned, eg. you say Drummoyne, the next person would need to say Earlwood or something beginning with ‘E’.  Someone said Holdsworthy and Sasho was next and said Wyong.  He was serious and Pierre, who wasn’t too familiar with the local area, tried to continue the game with the letter ‘G’ but the boys couldn’t stop falling about laughing and we had to stop the game.

Best prank you’ve seen pulled at the club?

Pierre used to like his chocolate and when we were in Tahiti the boys organised a way of stealing a bar he had.  He got angry and at lunchtime gave everyone the chance to return the bar and nothing more would be said about it.  So we sent him the bar back with a letter apologising.  Later on the trip he found a way to sit us all down and write something, he said it was part of our training and development routine. However all he did was compare the handwriting from the letter with whatever he had us write that day to catch whoever stole his chocolate. I can’t remember who it was but they given a very good talking too.

Worst dancer?

Alvin Ceccoli backed himself on the dancefloor and thought he had some moves but he was awful.  But all of the boys from Wollongong thought they were movers, they were a funny lot!!

Biggest party animal?

Had to be Dwight and his mate Fyfey, they liked a night out.  I only went out once with Yorkey.  I remember meeting Dwight for dinner at 7.30pm one Friday night and then we went to a bar afterwards.  We had a running session the next day quite early and went straight to the session from the bar.  It was a really tough session but we all got through it.  It was the type of thing you could get away with in old football but not anymore. Dwight, because of who he was, could often decide if he didn’t want to do a session but that day he did the full thing and it was tough.  He went up in my estimations that day because I could see he had the mental strength to get through it as well as the ability.

Favourite backroom staff member?

Stan Ivancic the club physio who is still there.  We got on really well from our Sydney United days together and I still take advice and have coffee with him now.

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