Ikonomidis plays down transfer rumours ahead of Glory return
The rise of Chris Ikonomidis’ star has been so swift that it is impossible to predict where he may end up in six months.
Since joining Perth Glory after a short loan spell with Western Sydney Wanderers last year, Ikonomidis has enjoyed a prolonged spell of form, scoring six goals in nine games and becoming a key component of the Caltex Socceroos’ attack.
On Friday the The West Australian revealed that there had been some interest from overseas in the 23-year-old, who was formerly on the books of Serie A club Lazio.
The man himself is maintaining a level head however and revealed to media earlier this week that he wasn’t looking for any contact regarding a potential move.
“At the moment I’m not really sure [about moving],” Ikonomidis said.
“I haven’t had any offers, I haven’t had any contact really with my agent so I’m just wanting to focus on my football, I find that’s better for me and to keep that stuff out of my head and maybe think about it in the off-season.”
The winger instead said he was keen to take the field after a month away from Hyundai A-League action.
“I told my mates in the team to stay in top spot for the time I’m gone and they did just that, they’ve been doing fantastically and I’m just raring to go,” he said.
“It was fantastic [Asian Cup], for me it was a dream to play in a major tournament with the Socceroos.
“I’ve had that dream since I was a young boy so doing that over the past month has been a dream come true and a really good learning experience for me, I think I can take a lot of positive experiences away from it.”
The man who brought him out West, Tony Popovic, was understandably excited at the prospect of a confident and eager Ikonomidis returning to the Glory fold ahead of their clash against Wellington Phoenix and HBF Park on Saturday night.
"We're happy that Chris is back," Popovic said.
"He was fantastic for the Socceroos and we were delighted as a club to see him perform the way he did.
"He's come back healthy and is delighted to be back with his teammates.
“We look forward to seeing him carry on where he left off and possibly be an even more confident player now that he's had that experience with the Socceroos."
Despite sitting four points clear at the summit, Popovic was wary of former teammate Mark Rudan’s Phoenix side.
"Wellington have been great this season; a breath of fresh air for the league,” he said.
“They keep playing good football and getting good results and they are where they deserve to be [on the ladder].
"I'm sure they'll come here with confidence, but we're also very confident and playing very well, so we look forward to it."