The Sunday Mail (Queensland)
BOZZA GLOVING RYAN’S SAVES
MAT Ryan is on track to become the best Australian goalkeeper in history, according to trailblazer Mark Bosnich.
Ryan will arrive in Socceroos camp tomorrow in Perth as a UEFA Champions League player, after his new club Valencia beat Monaco to advance to the group stage.
Bosnich said Ryan’s feet were as good as anyone’s in the world – including Germany and Bayern Munich star Manuel Neuer – and his move to Spanish La Liga club Valencia could propel him to greatness.
Australia has produced a string of top-shelf keepers, led by Bosnich with Mark Schwarzer and Zeljko Kalac, plus Ron Corry, Jimmy Fraser and Terry Greedy from yesteryear.
Fox Sports commentator Bosnich said Ryan’s $10.5 million move from Belgium’s Club Brugge could help him overtake the lot.
“He can become the best ’keeper in Australian history, better than any one of us,’’ Bosnich said.
“At 23, he’s already played in a World Cup but more importantly he’s playing at an even higher level and that’s the Champions League – it’s the VALENCIA THUMBS UP: Aussie ’keeper Mat Ryan. best of the best, regardless of where you’re born.
“He’s right on course. He won keeper of year in Belgium and now he’s arguably in the best league in the world.
“At comparative ages, Mat is well ahead of any of us. At 23 I had won a major trophy at Aston Villa but I hadn’t played Champions League, though it wasn’t as inclusive back then.
“At Valencia he’s already played at higher club level than Schwarzey, except for Chelsea, where his appearances were limited. But he’s got a long way to go in terms of his Australian record.’’
Ryan will make his Champions League debut on September 17 when Valencia host Russian club Zenit St Petersburg.