Schirripa eyeing A-League return


The Griffith product arrived in Sydney as a starry eyed teenager in 1999 after securing an athletic scholarship at the Kings school.
After completing his HSC, Schirripa spent two years as an apprentice with Northern Spirit before jumping ship in 2002 to link up with the Newcastle Breakers.
In the city made famous for its steel production, Schirripa achieved his greatest footballing honour to date after being crowned the Under 21 National League Player of the Year in his first year with the club.
?I really enjoyed my time with the Breakers, I was playing good football but injuries set in and by 2004 I felt it was time for a change,? he said.
?I came back to Sydney and signed with Olympic and was with them until the NSL died.
?Once that happened I was at a crossroads and decided to go home (to Griffith) where I played in the Northern Victorian League to keep fit.
?I still wanted to play at the elite level so I packed my bags once again and signed with the Central Coast Coasties in 2006.?
His State League performances didn?t go un-noticed and an injury to current Olyroos skipper Mark Milligan saw Schirripa handed a 12 week contract with Sydney FC.
After his time at ?Bling FC ? drew to a close, a call from Manly United coach Phil Moss saw Schirripa elect to call Cromer Park home and he has been entrenched on the northern beaches ever since.
?Coming to Manly was a great move, we have a great squad and an even better bunch of blokes,? he said.
?I like what Phil Moss has done with the club, he started from scratch with a five year plan and we are reaping the rewards now.?
Schirripa has long been touted as a player capable of bigger things and the decision to spend the off-season in the UK saw him return a different player.
?I felt towards the end of the last year I was playing well and I figured rather than having a break I should keep playing,?? he said.
?In previous years once the season has finished I have focused on work and other commitments.
?My sister is based in London and I hadn?t seen her in two years so I went to visit her and then secured trials with a couple of League One teams.
?Most of their squads were already settled so I figured it was going to be a battle to secure a contract but I knew if I kept my fitness levels up and worked on my consistency it would be a worthwhile exercise.?
It certainly was.
His dynamic start to the 2008 Telechoice Premier League is one of the chief reasons Manly find themselves perched at the top of the competition after eight rounds.
Schirripa has been linked with a move to rejoin Sydney FC in recent weeks but isn?t one for whispers.
?It is flattering to be in the mix, but I haven?t heard anything official from the club so you don?t know how credible the mail is.
?Like any footballer I want to play at the highest level possible and it is good to know I am being considered.?
Andrew Hurrell