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Andrew Redmayne welcomes Liam Reddy challenge for Wanderers’ No.1 gig

Bullish: Andrew Redmayne. Photo: Cameron SpencerHaving successfully starved off the competition of Dean Bouzanis as the Western Sydney Wanderers’ first-choice goalkeeper, Andrew Redmayne is confident he can remain in the coveted position despite the arrival of Liam Reddy.
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Although Reddy can’t play until January, the veteran stopper has clearly set his sights on displacing Redmayne before the season is out, with Bouzanis also rated highly.

However, Redmayne, 26, has performed so well in the opening 10 rounds that he’s confident enough in his own ability to hold the position he’s been entrusted with by coach Tony Popovic.

“I’m not worried about losing my sport at the moment. I feel I’m in great form and I can only welcome ‘Rocket’ because I think he’s a fantastic addition to the squad,” Redmayne said. “Having been involved with some successful clubs [Central Coast and Brisbane] I know how important it is to have a squad with depth. We’ve got three fantastic goalkeepers now and that’s good, healthy competition and it will only help Dean and myself to have Liam bring his skills and knowledge to the club.”

Although the Wanderers are Redmayne’s fourth A-League club, his form this season has seen his game elevated to a new level. “I think the work I’ve put in during pre-season is really coming to the fore now. It’s the hardest I’ve ever worked, it’s the leanest I’ve ever been, it’s the lightest I’ve ever been and I really think that the hard work is starting to pay off,” he said. “Honestly, I’ve never felt better. In games I feel like I’m physically stronger and mentally getting through games better, which is always the bigger challenge for goalkeepers.”

As well as the defensive four, Redmayne also has praised for the work of the midfield duo of Andreu and Dimas. “It’s really nice to be playing well and keeping clean sheets but my performances have been helped by the team’s massive collective effort,” he said. “The back four and the two holders have been exceptional this season. But even the whole team does defensive work. We’re pressing high, limiting chances for final third entries and entries into the box, which makes my job a lot easier.”

Unsurprisingly, Redmayne credits the club’s new goalkeeping coach Zeljko Kalac as playing a huge role in his own development.

“Working under ‘Spider’, someone with such a wealth of experience, has been phenomenal,” he said. “He’s very honest but he’s very fair. I don’t think you could want much more in a coach. I love working hard, I love being pushed and if you make a mistake, Spider is straight on top of you. If you do something well, and show improvement, he’s the first one to notice. It can be hard at times but overall it’s so rewarding to see the technical aspects of my game improving each week.”

The Wanderers are looking to extend their winning streak to eight on Saturday night away to Perth Glory but while the West ns have struggled this year, Redmayne says his teammates won’t ease off. “Everything is clicking but the Wanderers mentality, especially coming down from the top, is to never rest on your laurels and always look for ways to get better,” he said. “We really do just take it one game at a time, especially right now because there’s still so far to go. It was an extremely hard pre-season for everyone and we all had to get through that barrier to lay the foundations, and then also work out the tactical and technical changes the boss wanted. Those changes are now shining through.”

Redmayne said it was impossible to ignore how well the dressing room had bonded in recent months, which he believed was a catalyst for the brilliant results over the past two months. “It’s been incredibly positive and the team has a great chemistry going at the moment,” he said. “We had a lot of changeover in the off-season and the boss recruited extremely well with a lot of determined and hungry people whole wanted to buy in to change and to go on a path that the boss has got us on. Everyone believes in what we’re doing and the work we’re doing is being reflected.”

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