NEW Adelaide United signing Jake Barker-Daish has arrived at the club from Gold Coast United and says he is excited about starting his tenure with the Reds.
After driving across the border from his home town of Melbourne late last week, Barker-Daish revealed why Adelaide United was the club he wanted to be at in the next stage of his career.
“I felt there was a good structure (here), it’s very professional and stable, and I just felt that the best opportunity for me to come and play would be in Adelaide so that was the main reason for my decision,” Barker-Daish said.
The 18-year-old midfielder, who signed a two-year contract with the Reds earlier this month after spending last season at Gold Coast United, completed his second training session with his new team mates this morning and says he has settled in well.
“I’ve had two sessions now and the boys have been really good to me since I came in and the standard has been good so far,” Barker-Daish said.
While Barker-Daish’s contract only officially begins on May 1, he was keen to start training early, not only in order to get a head start for next season, but more so to keep himself in shape for the upcoming Qantas Young Socceroos (Australian Under 20) camps in June.
The talented and creative midfielder made his way up the ranks from the Victorian Institute of Sport to the AIS before landing his first professional contract with Gold Coast last season, in which time he has represented the Qantas Joeys and the Young Socceroos.
Like any aspiring youngster, Barker-Daish has grown up watching the best in the world ply their trade on television, and in his case, there is one specific Frenchman that has inspired the way Barker-Daish has gone about his football.
“I’ve always been a big fan of (Zinedine) Zidane…if anyone could be half the player he is you’d be happy, so that’s one person I try to model my game on,” Barker-Daish said.
Ready to embark on his new challenge in Adelaide, Barker-Daish says his experience from last season, in which he played in the last seven rounds of the Hyundai A-League during a turbulent time at Gold Coast United, has made him stronger both as a player and a person.
“It was probably one of the toughest experiences I’ve ever had to face in my short career, so it was tough mentally but all of the boys were really good through it and the coach at the time Mike Mulvey made everyone stay positive and try and play at their best,” Barker-Daish recalls of his experience at Gold Coast United.
Barker-Daish is ineligible to play in Adelaide United’s remaining Group Stage matches of its AFC Champions League campaign as he was not part of the initial squad the club submitted prior to the start of the competition.