Despotovic loving life in the A-League
New Sydney FC recruit Ranko Despotovic is enjoying the new found freedom that comes with playing in the Hyundai A-League.
New Sydney FC recruit Ranko Despotovic can't get enough of the Sydney weather - but it is the new found freedom that comes with playing in the A-League that the Serbian striker is enjoying most.
The 30-year-old joined the Sky Blues last month after three seasons with J-League club Urawa Red Diamonds.
He hit the ground running after scoring the winning goal in the 94th minute against Wellington Phoenix on debut and took his tally to three goals in four games with a classy finish in Sunday's 2-1 win over Melbourne Heart.
Asked the secret to his immediate success with his new club, the likeable Serbian admits he is relishing the more attacking mindset of the A-League after three years in the more conservative J-League.
"There are many differences ... in Japan they play a lot of defensive style of football and for strikers that is not so beautiful," Despotovic said when asked to compare the two competitions.
"Japan is different, there are so many tactics. You don't need to run a lot but you need to be tactically 100 percent prepared for everything.
"But the A-League is different, here is beautiful football – English style. You try to score more goals than your rivals so for a striker it is the most beautiful news.
"You come to a new league and you want to play football, you want to score goals."
Despotovic came off the bench in his first two appearances for the Sky Blues but has started the previous two games.
He concedes he is still adjusting to his new surroundings and admits he may never get used to the thrill of playing in front of Italian maestro Alessandro Del Piero.
"Can you imagine when they ask you, 'do you want to come to Australia? You're going to have Alessandro Del Piero behind you', what would you say?" he said.
"Only a crazy guy would say, 'no, I don't want to go there'. So having one big mind of his behind you is like already having half the job done.
"When you play with one of the biggest stars of football ever it's like a reward for everything I've done until now.
"So when you're on the pitch I try to do my job the best I can and do everything as well as I can ... his every movement is fantastic and every touch is incredible, so you need to give all your best to be anywhere near his level."
The Serbian international's arrival has coincided with Sydney's rise to third on the A-League ladder, however he was coy when asked his expectations for the remainders of the campaign.
"For me it's too early, I've only started two games and played four overall so that is a question for players who have been here from the start of the season and people who know the league better than I," he said.
"My expectations from now are to continue to try to win every game and of course in the end we never know how we finish, but if each of us gives 100 of our knowledge and abilities I think we'll be one of the top teams in the league of course."
But he made no secret of his desire to remain in the Harbour City beyond his current contract which expires in May.
"When you start to play good and you start to score the goals of course you would like to stay there," he said.
"I have a contract until the end of the season ... of course I would like to stay here.
"The people in the club are really good to me and I hope it's going to continue like that."
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