New signing Tim Cahill says his desire to embrace the pressure of playing in the Hyundai A-League meant his move to Melbourne City FC was “the right decision as a footballer.”
The Socceroos all-time leading goal scorer was officially unveiled as a City player on Monday and took part in a full training session for the first time with his new teammates.
Returning to play club football in Australia for the first time in 19 years, Cahill said his decision to join City was one which felt right from the very beginning.
“I knew it was the right decision,” Cahill said. “I knew it was the right decision months ago when we were talking and I think overall, for myself personally, it’s the right decision as a footballer.”
“I knew when I walked through this door and when I got on the aeroplane that I’m going to have a great time. It’s going to be a big challenge but this is what happens when you join big clubs; and this is a massive club.”
“There’s going to be a lot of pressure on me, but there was a lot of pressure when I moved to the Premier League. Then there was a lot of pressure when I took that jump to the MLS (Major League Soccer). There was a lot of pressure when I went to China and every time I come back into camp for Australia.
“This is what I need as a player, this is what has always made me tick.”
Drawing upon a memorable club career spanning across England, China and the United States, Cahill is eager to use his vast experience to aid the development of the Club’s next generation of talent.
“The culture is good here and the professionalism is on a different level,” he said. “Some clubs in Europe, in England, don’t have this set up, don’t have the opportunity, so I want these kids to really know the situation they’re in here. It’s pretty special and one of the biggest reasons I’m here.
“Some of these young players are in a great position as footballers in such an amazing set up to kick on to the next level and do something special for this club, not only domestically but internationally, and I said to them they need to challenge themselves.
“To be around Bruno [Fornaroli], Thomas Sorensen, Luke [Brattan] and Neil Kilkenny, I think we’re going to create a good ethos around this team, from what we’ve already created to a team that’s hungry; a team that’s going to try and get more success than what we did last year and to build on the way the manager and the City Football Group want to play.”
Cahill, who last played for Chinese club Hangzhou Greentown five weeks ago, has set his sights on a swift return to match fitness ahead of the new campaign.
“My target is to get fit in two weeks – maybe three. My next target is to be on the pitch on the opening day of the season and to help create a long term goal of being competitive with these players.”
“I’ve always been a team player, I take it game by game. I really want to contribute in a massive way. We were so close last year and I think the players we’ve added and the philosophy and way we want to play football, I think I suit it.”