Petrovski after goal

Veteran striker Sasho Petrovski is hoping a goal in his 100th A-League game will help kickstart his return to the Newcastle starting side when the Jets host North Queensland at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Veteran striker Sasho Petrovski is hoping a goal in his 100th A-League game will help kickstart his return to the Newcastle starting side when the Jets host North Queensland at EnergyAustralia Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

The journeyman striker made an immediate impact at the Jets when he scored a brace in Newcastle's Asian Champions League match against Korean side Ulsan earlier this year.

However, has been on the outer this season in a Newcastle side flushed with forward strike power including Englishman Michael Bridges, young gun Sean Rooney, Labinot Haltiti, Dutchman Donny De Groot and young representative players Jason Naidovski and Jason Hoffman.

Petrovski has been used as an impact player and managed his first goal for the Jets in A-League matches when he scored late in the thrilling 3-2 win over the Gold Coast last Sunday.

"The monkey is off my back," Petrovski told the media this week.

"It was a great feeling and one that was missed for a while. I had forgotten what it felt like to score a goal."

"Now I have a taste of it, hopefully I can keep it going."

Petrvoski, who has also enjoyed stints at Sydney FC and the Central Coast Mariners, said Newcastle's intense Asian Champions League campaign damaged his chances of winning a starting spot in the Jets earlier this season but he was hoping his renewed enthusiasm and fitness would help him force his way back into the starting eleven.

"We had a big campaign in the Asian Champions League and that took its toll on my body with all the travel and the playing," he said.

"With a new coach coming in, players had to rise and push themselves more and I struggled to do that.

"My body suffered a little bit and I dropped off in form and couldn't get back in the team."

"But Branko (Culina) has come in and set a high standard here," Petrovski said. "And he sent a strong message out to show him that you are working hard, and when you get the opportunity it is up to you to take it.

"This is the business end of the season. I'm glad I feel good coming into the run home.

"Hopefully the team can keep it going the way we are playing, help each other out and get results."

Culina, who confirmed Petrovski will again start form the bench this Sunday, echoed the striker's sentiments and stressed the importance of the depth of players in the squad in the goal of achieving a championship.

"He (Petrovski) is very important to us because it is people like him who will ensure and that everyone else who is currently in the team is doing their job otherwise he will replace them,"Culina said.

"So it is that competition that we have in this squad to make sure everyone is doing their job and no-one rests on their laurels, like Sash said he is itching to get into the starting eleven and this is going to be there opportunity to stake their claim and push the others to produce their best week-in, week-out."

"A couple of weeks ago. I called in all the players and said; 'everyone is talking about the starting eleven but is not just them it is you guys who are very important and key to them maintaining their form. And I said to them your chance will come and this is before Bridges and Vignaroli got injured and before Kantarovski got suspended. I alerted the players that the chances will be there, just make sure you are ready for it."

For his part Petrovski said he is ready to shine and will take the prestige of being one of the few players to achieve 100 A-League games as a spur to continue his trek back to run-on side.

"It is a nice milestone and I didn't really believe it when I was told this week," Petrovski said.

"It is nice to be up in that calibre of players who have reached this milestone and it is quite an achievement. Being around for quite some time has got me here. We play the game to enjoy ourselves and hopefully we can play as long as we can.

"It is nice to celebrate but really it is just another game."