The Newcastle Jets captain Nigel Boogaard is firmly focused on Saturday’s clash against Sydney FC at McDonald Jones Stadium and not his own future.
The veteran defender has been training hard to return to full fitness after suffering a leg injury in the Club’s home defeat to Adelaide United.
“Being out for as long as I have, I just want to play football,” Boogaard said.
“If I can get through this week, hopefully I’ll be up for contention and will be able to contribute on the park.”
While he’s off contract at the end of this season, Boogaard is solely concentrated on helping the team turn around the Club’s disappointing run of form as the 2020/21 season heads into the final stages.
“All my energy and focus is on making sure that we as a collective get out of this.” Boogaard said.
Currently the Jets sit at the bottom of the A-League ladder and Boogaard’s experience will be crucial in avoiding the wooden spoon.
Boogaard is not using his contract situation as an excuse and only wants to lead the team in the games ahead.
“It’s a conversation that needs to be had with myself, the coaching staff and the club,” Boogaard said.
“For me it’s in the back of my mind.
“I just want to turn things around.”
As the captain, Boogaard feels a responsibility to step up and to direct his younger teammates through this challenging period.
Boogaard sees the upcoming game against the reigning champions as a chance to build confidence and to instil some belief back into the team.
“We have got a solid run home in terms of opposition,” Boogaard said.
“It gives us an opportunity to prove to people that we are a better side than where we are sitting on the table.
“If you take scalps off those bigger teams, it gives confidence for us moving forward.”