Newcastle Jets striker Sasho Petrovski does not want to be thrown in the ‘veteran’ category and nor should he be.
The 35-year old is one of a few players in the A-League who is a natural, proven goalscorer, alongside Archie Thompson, Robbie Fowler, Paul Ifill ,Sergio van Dijk and perhaps Alex Brosque.
Sure, there are newcomers like Robbie Kruse, Jean Carlos Solorzano and Kosta Barbarouses who could well go on to be prolific scorers but there are not many around who can do it on a regular basis like Petrovski does.
14 goals for Sydney FC in 43 matches with just under half of those appearances off the bench and an almost identical scoring rate at Central Coast Mariners (14 from 44) has helped put the Bankstown-born attacker into the top echelon of A-League goalscorers since the competition’s inception in 2005.
After his stint at the Mariners, Petrovski moved onto Newcastle, where he wasn’t a very well-liked figure after continually scoring in the F3 derbies between the clubs.
But that soon changed when he scored on debut in the Asian Champions League and since that day, the Jets faithful, particularly the Squadron have taken him in as one of their own.
Cut to this season and Petrovski was being used sparingly by Jets coach Branko Culina. In his first five appearances, all off the subs bench, he amassed a paltry 56 minutes which would not even be enough for the greats of the game to get their scoring groove on.
But in the past month, Culina has opted for the proven abilities of Petrovski and he has come up with the goods in each match he has been involved in.
Firstly, an injury-time equaliser against the Mariners on November 24 allowed the Jets to grab a point before he tied the exhibition game with MLS giants LA Galaxy at 1-1 with a deft volley from close range before his side went on to take the match 2-1.
Back to the A-League, and Petrovski came up with another injury-time goal, this time in a 2-0 away win over North Queensland Fury on December 4 before ending any hope Gold Coast United had of producing a comeback on Wednesday night by netting the second goal of the 2-0 victory in the 82nd minute with a brilliant volleyed goal, controlling with his chest and his left thigh before putting it through a narrow gap to essentially wrap up proceedings.
It is these types of goals that have made Petrovski what he is today, along with the amount of hours he spends after training working on his finishing.
He classes a veteran as someone who is ‘nearly dead and dusted’ and that is something that Petrovski certainly is not.