Sprint superstar Usain Bolt is set to start for Central Coast Mariners in a final pre-season hit out in Campbelltown against a side coached by former Socceroo Nicky Carle next month.
"It would take a lot of pressure off me, as an attacker it’s something that would be good but for me I am just going to work, push myself and hope everything comes together when it matters."
Mariners coach Mike Mulvey welcomed the game as a final chance to get his preparations in place for the season ahead.
“This is an important game in our pre-season, we’re getting into the nitty gritty now,” Mulvey said. “You need to make sure all your preparations are done so that you’re ready to go come round one so this is a very important game.
“It will be a great occasion. It’s a chance for the region to show their passion for football and also an opportunity to cheer on their local players against an A-League opposition.
“Usain is progressing and that’s the main thing. From the outset, we said he needed time, we said we would give him 12 months if need be.
"A reasonable assumption would be that around January we should be judging where he’s at. We’re going to be ramping up our individual sessions with him over the next few weeks, so he will be given every opportunity.”
The match date almost tempted rival coach Carle out of retirement.
“I am jealous I wish I was playing,” he said. “How great is this going to be?
"Not just for our community but for the local NPL players dreaming of one day playing in the Hyundai A-League and to say they have played against Usain Bolt is something they will never forget.”
Macarthur South West United bid chairman Gino Marra added: “I’m excited to have one of the world’s greatest athletes playing a trial game in our region.
“As a Football fanatic, I can’t wait to see Usain do his stuff on the field. It’s also exciting to have the Central Coast Mariners chose our region for Usain’s next game.
"This is also a great opportunity for our local NPL players not only to play against a Hyundai A-League side but also against one of the world’s highest profile athletes."