New start for Downey
GYMPIE soccer export and Perth Glory talent Jimmy Downey is looking forward to a new season free of injury.
Downey, 22, missed three-quarters of the season last year after suffering two separate knee injuries.
The first was bruising of the bone and swelling while the second was a problem with the medial ligament.
“They weren’t serious injuries, thankfully, but they did require rest,” Downey said.
While sidelined with the injury, Downey was keen not to let his fitness slip.
“I couldn’t run, obviously, but I did a lot of cardio work on the bike in the gym,” he said.
The use of the exercise bike has paid dividends for Downey, who says his fitness is on par with before the injury.
“I’m feeling in good shape and ready to go,” he said.
The Gympie soccer product has hit the field a number of times this year, playing in a couple of a youth team matches.
While it is not at the elite level, Downey says he is enjoying playing and working his way off the bench.
“It’s just good to be back out on the field playing and enjoying it,” he said.
Meanwhile, Downey’s contract with Perth Glory is up for revision come March, but he is not looking that far ahead at the moment.
“I’m just taking it week by week and staying focused on training well and playing well,” he said.
Initially, Downey was offered a two-year contract but after the first year, he was signed up to another two-year contract – effectively giving him three years with the A-league side.
“Having not played most of the last season will make it difficult when my contract is up, but that is beyond my control and it’s not useful to be stressing about that,” he said.
Looking to the season ahead, Downey believes Perth Glory has a good chance in the national competition.
“The squad is definitely the strongest it’s been since I have been a member of it,” he said.
“I think it could even be the best in the league.
“There is a possibility we may lose a few players, but we more than have the depth in the team.”
Perth Glory concluded last season with a 4-0 thumping of Newcastle, injecting the side with confidence for the season ahead.