“We’ve had a bit of bad luck in the goalkeeping range at the moment,” Port Kembla head coach, Steve Dimitrievski, said.
“Our first choice goalkeeper is still available for first-grade, thank god for that.
“But our other first-grade goalkeeper has dislocated or broken his finger, in the warm up a couple of weeks ago.
“And another young keeper we signed only last week, in the warm up dislocated his shoulder.
“So we’ve only got really one or two fit goalkeepers but I really need about three or four.”
Despite this run of physical mishaps among the Port goalies, the club is doing pretty well in the season with 17 points to its name while Tarrawanna Blueys, who sit at second on the table, is sitting at 21 points.
There are 33 points still up for grabs with the whole second round of the season yet to play.
“Our aim, just like everybody else, is to finish in that top five, the semi-finals,” Dimitrievski said.
“It’s a rebuilding year for Port Kembla this year.
“So far we’re doing very well.
“We lost about eight or nine first-grade established players last season; they’ve gone on to different clubs and we’ve recruited fairly well but it’s a very young squad this year.
“I think the average age is about 22 years.”
The club, which was founded in 1966 by a group of young Italian migrants who drank their afternoon coffee at the Warrawong Coffee Lounge, has a sizeable amount of Italians in the squad and a history of maintaining Italian traditions.
“We have our pizza days and we’ve got a lot of volunteers with Italian background, and a lot of executives with Italian background,” Dimitrievski said.
“That’s the heritage of the club.
“And we’ve got about five or six players in the squad with Italian background.
“But at the end of the day if they’re good enough it doesn’t matter what nationality they are, they’ll play.”
Dimitrievski said that he was proud to report that a couple of players had recently gone onto bigger clubs, including Jason Perez, who was signed to a National Premier League football side in Sydney.
“I never begrudge any of my younger players getting a contract in a better league, so good luck to them,” Dimitrievski enthused.
Port Kembla’s latest match over the weekend was against Coniston F.C. with a 1-1 draw result after a close game in which “they were stronger in the first half and we were better in the second half”.
Dimitrievski mentioned some starring players of the season, including current keeper Cris Fuentes, the lethal forward Sandy Lowcock who has scored eight goals in the last nine games, plus Tony Musumeci and Jayden Salucci, “but not to single anyone out”.
“There are many young players that are building for the future at Port Kembla,” Dimitrievski concluded.