Box Hill United senior men’s centre-back Javier Marangos captained his side to a 2-1 victory over Melbourne City (youth) last weekend, and the youngster shared his delight at being given the responsibility for the first time this season.
The victory against City’s young guns catapulted Box Hill to fourth in the NPL2 East ladder and extended their unbeaten run on home soil.
Looking back at the special occasion, the 20-year-old said, “It was a big privilege to captain the club – [I have been] playing here since last year. It’s a great honour to be given the responsibility to take the boys out on the pitch.
“It was following on from what Kokka (Nicholas Kokolakis – senior men’s captain) was doing – cheering up the boys before the game, making sure everyone is doing their job on the pitch and leading by example.”
Marangos – who has been a leading light at the heart of the rearguard alongside Danish import Dennis Nielsen – replaced an injured Kokolakis as the skipper against City.
Describing the positive influence from the latter, he added, “Kokka is always supportive of that sort of stuff. He is like a big brother to me. He is always a presence, no matter if he is not playing.”
Photo Credit:' Passion Creations'
The side has had to contend with several injuries in the early stages, resulting in hit-outs for the likes of Jeremy Vun, Jamie Mammino, Amr Mohd Sarip and Yianni Skliros.
Marangos deflected praise on the team’s depth following their instant impact, saying, “We [have] shown it from day one. Con (head coach) has done a brilliant job in signing players that offer depth in the squad and not just squad players.
“I think this year everyone is going to have a role to play and it just showed on the weekend [against City]. Those boys came in and did a job, and it was fantastic to see.
“At the moment, everyone is starting to come good and gel together at the perfect time. We can see it from their performances on the pitch and the results we are getting in the games.”
This weekend’s opponents at Wembley Park are Moreland City, who have struggled for form with four points after five NPL2 West rounds.
Previewing the match, the former Richmond SC defender said, “It’s obviously going to be a big challenge for us because we are a young team, and they (Moreland) are very hard and very experienced players who have been in the league for a long time.
“Seeing as they came second last year, and for them to get off to three losses at the start of the season, is going to be even harder for us to try and cope with their pressure and intensity coming here.”
The match will be live streamed on NPL Victoria’s Facebook page as part of Football Victoria’s latest broadcasting initiative. Marangos hailed this venture saying, “It’s fantastic. It gives players that you wouldn’t normally see the opportunity to star and hopefully get noticed by bigger clubs.”
But he played down any added pressure due to the presence of cameras: “Most of the players in the team – they perform under pressure; and that’s why they are in there.”