Joe ‘The Chippy’ Vrkic


?It?s something all players want but not many achieve so it really is an honour to captain Sydney United.?
Married, to Sandra, Vrkic believes the mixture of young and old at the club could well reap dividends: ?We have a great crop of youngsters at the club and the mixture of youth and experience is coming into its own.
?I think I?m about the oldest but we have a few 26/27-year olds with plenty of league experience to pass on so we are still in with a good shout this season.?
On that subject, what does he feel would be a decent end to the campaign?
?We are still in with the chance to finish in the top two, although that doesn?t really depend on us but Sutherland slipping up and they?ve not really looked like it. But we do have the opportunity to overtake Manly United and finish second which would be a good result although we will keep battling away in the hope the Sharks do stutter of course.?
It?s a fairly reasonable bet Sydney United will make the finals but on their day they are worried about no other team as Joe says: ?We don?t fear any team in the league to be honest and feel that the only side who can beat us is ourselves when we are truly on our game.
?We feel we have the goods and can deliver when it matters and we are starting to find some really good form at the right end of the season so when it comes to the finals it would really be in our hands.?
Joe Moric, whose brother Ante played for United in the NSL days and now runs football academies in Panania, and Todd ?Mitch? Brodie are noted as two of the main jokers at the club, in particular Mitch Buchannan, although getting details of their pranks is something the guys keep in dressing room circles.
Both are rated highly by Vrkic who expects big things of them but whether they could go on to match his boyhood idols of Franco Baresi and Paulo Maldini is something they need to work on. Aiming for other greatly admired players, Tony Popavic or Velimir Kupresak wouldn?t be so bad either.
Vrkic earns a crust away from the field as a Roofing Carpenter and has his own business, Gilmour Carpentry, which is proving quite successful in its own right but the big question, always, is further down the track is coaching something to think about?
?Maybe but I?m still concentrating on playing for now although it is something at the back of my mind.
?Then again, I?ve seen plenty of lads go into the coaching side of things and after a few years they look like they should be retiring it has aged them that much,? he laughs.
?Seriously though, I want to keep my youthful good looks for a while yet so coaching isn?t on the agenda just now,? he adds before completely breaking up with laughter.
Some strive to be leaders, some attain leadership under false pretences but Joe, he was simply born to lead.
-By Micky Brock