Chris Grossman has gone from packing crates at Woolworths to training alongside Emile Heskey at the Newcastle Jets.
He-s gone from packing crates at Woolworths to training alongside former English Premier League star Emile Heskey and Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets recruit Chris Grossman says he plans to cherish every moment of his A-League rebirth.
Prior to joining the Jets as a short-term injury replacement for Ben Kantarovski, Grossman was playing for Moreland Zebras in the semi-professional Victorian Premier League.
The 25-year-old was supplementing his income by working at a local Woolworths and said the experience had made him hungrier to reignite his professional career.
“I was working at Woolworths and I-m ever so grateful to them for giving me the time off to chase my dream, which is to play in the A-League and play professionally,” Grossman said.
“It-s definitely a tough life and that-s probably the big thing I-ll take into this experience. I don-t want to go back into that working environment again if I don-t have to.
“It-s such a good life being a professional footballer and this opportunity is one I-m hoping to grab with both hands.
“I was packing crates and they were long hours and tough weeks. It definitely opens your eyes up to what-s on the other side of the fence if you don-t put in while you-re here.
“It was a great eye-opener, but I-m ever so grateful to be back for the time I am and hopefully that turns into something a little bit longer.”
Grossman played a combined total of 50 A-League matches for his previous Clubs Queensland Roar and North Queensland Fury.
However, with Kantarovski expected to return in approximately six weeks, he is aware he may only have a short window of opportunity to put his best foot forward this time around.
The central midfielder said he will be doing everything in his power to impress the Jets coaching staff.
“I-d been playing down in Melbourne in the State League there, working hard for an opportunity and I-m ever so grateful to the coaching staff and the Jets for the opportunity,” Grossman said.
“I-d love a permanent opportunity and this is just a stepping stone to getting that and I really need to prove myself now.
“I need those (good) performances first before anything can be decided. The ball is in my court now, they-ve given me the opportunity and I really need to prove I want to be here.
Grossman said he felt ready to play if called upon for this weekend-s clash with Melbourne Heart at AAMI Stadium.
“I-m just hoping to be available for selection. It-s been a couple of weeks without a game for me so It-s just easing my way back in,” he said.
“Wherever I can fit into the team to help out I-ll be grateful for.
“Gary (van Egmond) and I had a brief chat about me easing my way into the week, just because I haven-t played in the last couple of weeks.
“I-ll just ease my way in, make sure I don-t get injured and we-ll just see what happens from there.”
Grossman said his new teammates had made him feel very welcome in Newcastle.
“It-s great to be back in such a professional environment again,” he said.
“Obviously the boys were a bit down after the defeat on the weekend, but the way they trained today, I can see a quick turnaround from that.
“It-s a very good, hungry group of lads that want to have success. The table doesn-t lie, they-re (in third place) for a reason.
“The weekend was just a little slip and I-m sure we-ll get back to winning ways very soon.”