Box Hill United have brought promising shot-stopper Yianni Skliros into the senior men’s squad for the 2019 NPL2 season.
Appearing for his first interview with Box Hill’s media, the youngster spoke about his excitement to get into the thick of things with his new teammates ahead of a fresh challenge.
Skliros lifted the U/20s NPL title with Pascoe Vale last term and was awarded the U/20s Best & Fairest runners-up medal at CB Smith Reserve in 2017.
The 21-year-old is quickly picking up the fast-paced style of play the backroom staff are trying to encourage at Wembley Park, and said about the pre-season progress, “I am quite excited for the start of the season. The team’s shaping up nice and had some good results in the practice games. I am looking forward to it.
“That’s their (the coaches’) philosophy. You can expect a lot of high pressure and a possession-based football game. That’s what we need to work towards and having a good structure from the back as well. [That’s] where I am involved in, and it’s important to keep possession [of] the ball while starting the attacks.”
Skliros grabs attention with his footwork and a take-charge attitude in the heart of the backline and has previously plied his trade with Melbourne City’s youth team. While with the A-League giants, he clinched the 2015 Foxtel National Youth League.
Describing how it is key for him to stick to the team’s beliefs, Box Hill’s latest recruit under the posts added, “For me, it’s very important for the team to build a camaraderie around the sport and to stay quite tightly-knit, and [then] you get that winning feeling as well, which is fantastic. That’s why we play the sport, which is quite exciting.”
Speaking about the side’s international import – Danish centre-back Dennis Nielsen – and the quality he has brought into the team, Skliros said, “Dennis comes from the European experience. He’s a solid figure to have [in defence], [who] likes to keep the ball and control [the play]”.
“I think it’s important to get players like him and have a good balance between the younger and the more experienced players in the squad.”