From Good To Great

Teenage defender Curtis Good boasted modest aspirations heading into his debut Hyundai A-League season.

Teenage defender Curtis Good boasted modest aspirations heading into his debut Hyundai A-League season.

While Good has been touted as a potential cornerstone of future Socceroo sides, the 18-year old was expected to play a supporting role at Melbourne Heart FC this season, with former Australian Institute of Sport coach Jan Versleijen and his father advising him to set a target of 10 senior appearances.

But 18 weeks into the 2012/13 season, Good has featured in all but two fixtures after he was named to the Young Socceroos for the AFC Under-19 Championship qualifiers during November.

“I was talking to my Dad about it, and he said ‘listen, if you play 10 games, whether starting or on the bench, you-ve done well.- I-ve passed that target now which is fantastic,” Good said.

Having exceeded his own expectations, Good admits he is surprised by his meteoric rise, which will likely see the Victorian-born youngster named in the starting eleven for the Melbourne Derby tomorrow night.

Such an achievement appeared beyond the realms of possibility just 12 months ago, but now Good looms as pivotal to Heart-s goal of snaring three points from the cross town match-up.

Good however remains level headed regarding his achievement, despite his status as a local featuring in the biggest match on the Victorian football calendar.

“If you had asked me (what it means to play in a Derby) a year ago, I would have said it would be a massive surprise,” he said.

“But now I feel part of the team and everything, so I feel confident in my ability to play in the first team.”

The Melbourne Derby-s meteoric rise to marquee sporting contest has seen the clash develop into one of the most eagerly anticipated fixtures of Melbourne-s summer sporting calendar.

Good says build-up and aura of the occasion is unlike anything he experienced in his albeit brief career to date.

“You try to treat the Derby like any other game, but when you head out onto the pitch, the feeling is different, the atmosphere is incredible,” he said.

With convention dictating form often counts for nothing in Derby matches, Heart will look to use the contest to reboot its season, realigning its course for a debut finals appearance.

“We just need to get that winning momentum back,” Good said.

“You saw how we went through an eight week period where we just couldn-t lose, now it-s the other way round. I suppose this is a great game to do it.

“I mean if we do it here, we can carry that momentum through to the finals."