When Socceroos saviour Tim Cahill has to work for his spot in the squad, you know you have an incredibly competitive team.
After the forward’s heroics against Syria the week before, Cahill came off the bench in the Melbourne Derby to guide his side through the final minutes of the contest, rounding out the 2-1 result at Etihad Stadium.
Despite playing 120 minutes on Tuesday night, Cahill understood Warren Joyce’s decision to start him on the bench and says whether it be anyone in the team or himself, they are focused on producing on the park.
“I wanted to start [in the Derby] because obviously you come back and you want to be involved in the derbies,” Cahill said.
“I also knew that the 11 starting played unbelievably the week before. You know when you look at the bench, the fight for starting positions is going to be tough, but we complement each other because when you come on you have to make a difference.
“I always say, whether it’s five minutes or 95 minutes, you have to give everything and I think that was the difference the other night. [Marcin] Budzinski came on in the 42nd minute and scored so every single player played their part.
“Importantly, we won a massive game that we won’t take lightly and we will take that confidence with us into the next game. Derbies mean everything to the fans and it’s something we can give back to the fans, with a reward for sticking with us and building that fan base throughout that game.”
Saturday’s match against Wellington will see Cahill and City head into the contest unchanged and with the fight for places heating up, the Socceroos all-time leading goalscorer says it can only be good for the Club.
“I feel we can only get stronger, because we’re improving,” he said.
“Training is still ramping up even more, we’re gelling well as a group and we’ve got a lot of players who can play [in the first XI] and a bench that is just as strong as some of the starting line-up players.
“We know we’re going to need all of the players throughout the season to contribute to the games.”
City and Cahill take on Wellington on Saturday at AAMI Park, kick-off 5.35pm. Click here to get your tickets for the match and make the most of our ‘Kids go FREE’ offer.