Wanderers midfielder Keanu Baccus is adamant the players staying well-grounded despite the impressive start to the season that sees them unbeaten in the opening two rounds of the Hyundai A-League.
Going into the first Sydney Derby of the season at Bankwest Stadium on Saturday night, Baccus stressed the need to treat the biggest rivalry in Australian soccer as “a new start”.
“It is going to be an amazing feeling to play at our home ground in the first derby of the season,” he told Macquarie Sports Radio.
“For sure, the noise level is going to be something else.
“(Given the results over the past few seasons) I guess we have to take it as a fresh start and put the rest behind us. It is the first derby at Bankwest so we want to go out there and start with a bang and get a good result.
“The good thing is that our coach (Markus Babbel) is happy with the way we have started the season but is keeping our feet on the ground.”
Baccus played a leading role in last week’s 2-1 win over Melbourne Victory in Melbourne, producing an early contender for goal-of-the-season with his stunning, first-time strike from outside the box to give the Wanderers the lead.
BACCUS SINGS PRAISES OF WANDERERS ACADEMY
It was a goal that was born in the Wanderers Academy with Mo Adam and Nick Sullivan contributing significantly in the lead up with Baccus paying tribute to the club for putting their faith in him.
“It means a huge amount for me to play for the Wanderers. It is my home club, they brought me in as a young boy under Trevor Morgan and they have grown me into the player I am today,” Baccus said proudly.
He was also full of praise for the Wanderers new recruits and especially former Swiss international Pirmin Schwegler, who has played a prominent role in the opening two games of the season.
“He is such a tremendous player, he has so much experience and knowledge,” Baccus said of the man he plays alongside in the middle of the park.
“To learn from him is just crazy ... all the young boys hang off everything he does because we pick up so much off of him.”
Of Babbel’s influence on his playing style, Baccus said the German brings such a great presence to the club.
“Yeah, yeah he has a bit of a swagger with the way he dresses, but with his experience and all he has done during his career, he is such a great mentor to have at the club.”