What a ride it’s been for Matt Jurman.
It’s one that’s taken him all the way to the top of Australian football, to championships and appearances in green and gold, and now he’s found himself in Newcastle Jets colours for the first time.
This is Matt’s journey so far.
It started at Wollongong where Matt Jurman grew up, before moving to the western suburbs of Sydney, graduating high school and heading to the AIS.
There, he furthered his development and managed to impress enough playing with Sydney Olympic to earn himself a youth contract with Sydney FC.
Funnily enough though, he made his debut for the senior team before any youth appearance. He came off the bench against Perth Glory in Round 3 of the 2007/08 A-League season, at the age of just 17.
In 2008, he achieved immediate success in their youth team helping them win their first youth championship, whilst continuing to make sporadic appearances for the senior side. That included one game against Adelaide United, where he received a red card for a second bookable offence – the only red card Matt has ever received in his career.
In 2010, Jurman became an A-League Premier and Champion with Sydney, having made 7 appearances for the team throughout the season but his shining moments came after he made the switch to Brisbane in 2011.
Under Ange Postecoglu, Matt honed his craft, develop his mentality and enhanced his game earning himself a consistent starting spot upon his arrival.
Having joined a championship-defending team, keeping down his centre back position proved to be tough, and by the end of the season, Jurman found himself as an unused substitute in the Roar’s Grand Final victory.
Despite his side bowing out in the finals the following year, there was no doubting that Matt was a greater player for the experiences at Brisbane, and when he returned to Sydney FC, he was a much different player to the one that had left a few seasons ago.
The boy from Wollongong proved himself as a leader and fortress at the back starting in almost every game when fit. He helped his side to a Grand Final in the 2014/15 season, won the Sydney FC Player of the Year award in 2015/16, and even scored a couple of A-League goals along the way.
In 2017, Matt’s side went onto win the A-League Championship, but that was after he had already moved on midway through the season, finding himself in the K-League with top side, Suwon Samsung Bluewings.
He helped Suwon finish in 3rd that season, but the real milestone that year came in a different jersey – a Socceroos one.
In August 2017, Jurman made his Australian debut against Syria in a 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifier and with strong performances after, he was selected as part of the 23-man squad to go to Russia.
While he didn’t get onto the pitch at the World Cup, the achievement is still one many will never experience in their lifetime and perhaps it isn’t the only time he’ll get to be there on the big stage.
Now Matt is a Jet. He joins us on a two-year deal after playing a season in Saudi Arabia, and with Western Sydney Wanderers and he’s here to make an impact.
He was the first man new Manager, Arthur Papas recruited to the Club, and he’ll be the rock we rely on from the back.
Just like the whole of the A-League squad, Jurman’s been putting in the hard work throughout pre-season preparing for what is set to be a huge year.
Matt’s journey doesn’t stop now. The best is yet to come.