Liam Reddy wins race to start season as Sydney FC's No. 1 choice keeper

Liam Reddy has won the battle to start the 2011/12 Hyundai A-League season behind the Sydney FC defence and will line up in goal when Sydney FC takes on Melbourne Victory at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night.

Liam Reddy has won the battle to start the 2011/12 Hyundai A-League season behind the Sydney FC defence and will line up in goal when Sydney FC takes on Melbourne Victory at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night.

Reddy and Ivan Necevski shared goalkeeping duties during the Pre Season as Vitezslav Lavicka and Sydney FC goalkeeper coach Zeljko Kalac gave both players the opportunity to start the season between the sticks.

Reddy, who started in 18 of the 30 Sydney FC A-League matches last season, was happy to have won the battle but focussed on making sure he remains the first choice ‘keeper for the entire season after he was usurped for 13 matches by Necevski last year following a dip in form.

“Obviously I-m happy to have been selected to start the first game in goals,” Reddy said. “We-ve had a great Pre Season and it was made clear to us both (Reddy and Necevski) that it was a 50/50 choice and I-m glad I-ll start the season.

“Now I have to make sure that I continue to train hard and perform week in week out because I know there is competition for a place. Last year I missed some matches and I don-t want to do that again this season.”

Reddy will have a stern early test on Saturday night against a Melbourne Victory side that possesses a multitude of attacking options in Archie Thompson, Harry Kewell, Danny Allsopp, Carlos Hernandez and Jean Carlos Solorzano.

“They are a strong side and they have a lot of attacking options so it will be a tough assignment for all of us,” Reddy said. “Not just Harry (Kewell) but Archie (Thompson), (Danny) Allsopp, Carlos Hernandez and (Jean Carlos) Solorzano, they have some good attacking players.

“But we have done well in recruiting some good experienced defenders like Megsy (Michael Beauchamp), Pascal Bosschaart and Jamie Coyne and both Jamo (Scott Jamieson) and Sebba (Sebastian Ryall) have looked good in pre season.”

Coach Vitezslav Lavicka gave Reddy a glowing endorsement but also warned both goalkeepers that he expected the competition for the No.1 position to continue.

“Liam has won the first starting role after the Pre Season,” Lavicka said. “He has done well and will start but we have two experienced goalkeepers and Liam and Ivy (Ivan Necevski) will continue to push each other all year.”

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