Newcastle Jets striker Ryan Griffiths says his first meeting with his older brother and Sydney FC defender Adam isn’t one he’s relishing.
The pair are set to clash when Sydney FC host the Jets at Allianz Stadium on Saturday, October 13th and the frontman says there are other defenders he-d prefer to be facing.
“I don-t like playing against my brother to be honest. I know what a competitor he is and I know how physical he is, so maybe I-ll just stand on the other side when we-re playing against him,” said the 31 year old.
“I-d like to think he-ll give me a nice kick early so I-ll fire up a bit and give me an incentive to play a little bit better.
“I haven-t had too much of an impact against Sydney since I-ve been back. I think I-ve played three games against Sydney and haven-t scored once, so hopefully with Adam there he might lend me a little goal,” he quipped.
The game will also be notable for Italian superstar Alessandro Del Piero-s first appearance in front of his home Allianz Stadium crowd.
“It-s Sydney FC-s first home game, big Alessandro is going to be playing so I hope that it-s going to be a brilliant spectacle with some good football played amidst all the attention it-s going to bring,” said Griffiths.
Before that the Sky Blues travel to New Zealand to face Wellington Phoenix in the first game of the 2012-13 season, with Phoenix skipper Andrew Durante backing Sydney to be front runners.
“If I had to say a couple of teams probably Sydney, with all their signings in the off-season, are looking strong and probably Melbourne Victory with the Ange factor over there.”
“I think they (Sydney FC) bought some great players. I-m yet to see them but on paper they look very exciting and we-ll see how they go on Saturday,” he said.
Week three sees the Sky Blues face a new rival in the Western Sydney Wanderers for the first time, when the club comes up against former stars Tony Popovic, Mark Bridge, Nikolai Topor-Stanley, Joe Gibbs, Shannon Cole and WSW captain Michael Beauchamp.
“It-s about time Sydney FC had a rivalry other than Melbourne,” said the newly appointed skipper. “I think it-s going to be great for the game in general and I-m sure the hype leading up to it the week before is going to be fantastic.”
Central Coast Mariners must wait until round 5 before they face Sydney, but it-s still a clash Mariners captain John Hutchinson is looking forward to.
“With Sydney FC and ourselves it-s always a good game,” said the midfielder. “There are always goals and you know you-re up for a big game.
“They-re a tough team to play and they-ve made some good signings this year and it-s going to be tough for us.”
Sydney FC marquee Brett Emerton is also predicting a good season for the Sky Blues.
“I think it-s been a productive off-season for us and we-ve signed some fantastic players,” said the Socceroo midfielder.
“Obviously Del Piero coming on board has given everyone that extra little boost throughout the team and throughout the club, so an exciting year ahead and hopefully we live up to all expectations.”
2012/13 Sydney FC Memberships are now on sale with Public Transport to and from the game from all over Sydney covered in the Membership price.
Purchase your 2012/13 Sydney FC Membership or call (02) 8314 5100.