Football 12 months ago

Ryan puts phone blues behind him

  • Ryan puts phone blues behind him

    ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 24: Mathew Ryan of Australia looks on during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualification match between the Australia Socceroos and Tajikistan at the Adelaide Oval on March 24, 2016 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

If you want to know how frustrating Mat Ryan's year has been, just ask his mum.

It was this time last year that Ryan's dream move to Spanish giants Valencia turned sour.

A meniscus tear laid the Socceroos goalkeeper out after starting the first two matches of the season for the La Liga side.

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He would make just six more all season, losing his place for both club and country while he recuperated.

Watching sides that he should be in doesn't come easily to the 24-year-old, and he let his mother know all about it.

"The amount of times I was on the phone to her swearing and being frustrated..." he said.

"It was my first kind of experience with something like that, not playing regularly ... it was tough."

While the knee troubles are hopefully behind Ryan, there's still no job security.

Fighting off Mitch Langerak, who has come through his own injury-plagued season to be first-choice at Stuttgart, and Adam Federici for the Socceroos gloves will take some doing.

Ryan said he was "humbled" to keep getting the call from Ange Postecoglou as the Socceroos attempt to reach a fourth-straight World Cup.

At Valencia, he's in a three-way tussle for the gloves with long-term custodian Diego Alves and Spaniard Jaume Domenech, who filled the breach last season.

But he was chosen for the opening two rounds in Spain and will head back after national team duties hopeful of retaining the role - despite two defeats.

"It's similar to the Socceroos, you never know if you're going to play or not," he said.

"I'm pretty proud of myself that I've won the starting spot for the first two games.

"Hopefully I can go back there and ... start rectifying the results."

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