Friday, January 10, 2003
Aussie deal hit a minor $nag By RONNIE OH
PENANG: Australian Geoff Dwyer is just dollars away from fulfilling his childhood dream to become a full-fledged professional football player.
The 24-year-old central defender, who hails from Sydney, has done enough to get an offer to play for Penang in the season, which begins on Feb 8.
“Penang have made me an offer and I am very tempted to say yes because it means fulfilling my childhood dream,” said Dwyer before a training session yesterday.
DWYER: Played as a defender for Australian club side Parramatta Melita.
“But I have asked for a little more time. I still need to think further and also iron out some personal matters back home before I can give an answer.
“Football is not my only job back home. I am a qualified designer and I have to sort out some contract matters with my company.
Another factor is money. What I am to earn here must be better than what I get back home.”
Dwyer, who played for Parramatta Melita in the New South Wales Premier League last year, flew into Penang earlier this week on the recommendations of former Penang skipper Balla Conde.
And he has showed since Monday that he could strike up a good partnership in defence with skipper Chee Wan Hoe.
“I don't really know much about Malaysian football but I am very impressed with the Penang team,” said Dwyer.
“They have very sharp forwards and a stout defence. With Chee (Wan Hoe), easily a towering figure in the backline, I am confident I should have no problem fitting it.”
Penang coach Irfan Bakti said of Dwyer: “He is definitely better than the Cameroon player (Florent Awono) who was on trial with us last month.
“He can click well with Wan Hoe. We are looking for a strong defender and we hope that Dwyer will take up our offer.
Dwyer said that if al went well, he will be available to play for Penang in a quadrangular tournament in Singapore from Jan 20-26.
The other teams in the tournament are Kedah, Selangor and S-League's Woodlands Wellington.