JETS INSIDER - Taylor Regan

In this week’s edition of Jets Insider,Taylor Regan answers questions submitted by the Club’s Members and supporters.

In this week-s edition of Jets Insider, Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets defender Taylor Regan answers questions submitted by the Club-s Members and supporters.

Regan speaks about the privilege of playing for his hometown Club and his desire to become a more permanent fixture in Jets line-up this season.

Zach Goldman asks via email: Does being part of your hometown Club make playing in the A-League more special?

Taylor Regan (TR): Definitely. I grew up supporting the Club, albeit under a different name and my idols came from this town.

Obviously I came through the State League and it was a bit of a success story that I was lucky enough to get a chance with the Jets youth team and thankfully I was able to take that with both hands.

Thomas Walker asks via email: As someone who has graduated from the Jets youth team, how important do you think it is to have a competition like the National Youth League?

TR: It-s very important. It gives the young kids in Newcastle something to aspire to before they reach the first team. Not only that, but it-s good that the Newcastle Jets in particular are showing their faith in the local kids.

We-ve seen in the NBN State League that the Jets youth team is made up of 17 to 18-year-olds and they-re mixing it with men. It shows that physically and technically they-re excellent.

The National Youth League has been a great addition to the football landscape in Australia and to be one of those boys who made the step-up from the youth team to the first team was a privilege. Hopefully there are many more talented kids to come through as well.

Jess Pritchard asks via email: Advice for young footballers hoping to one-day play professionally?

TR:I think you-ve got to have fun while you-re young. Of course you need to listen to your coaches and train hard, but don-t live and breathe football to the point where if you do get a knock back you-re overly disappointed.

I had plenty of knock backs when I was young and I certainly wasn-t the most talented kid, but I wanted it more than everyone else and I worked hard. I used to surf and hang out with mates and other things like that which helps get your mind off football and gives you a bit of a release.

@ALeague_Rhyming asks via Twitter: Taylor Regan can you say, the style of football the coach wants to play?

TR: We-re going to have an up-tempo, high pressing game that-s based around keeping possession and looking to play forward and create as many opportunities as possible.

We-ve got a young squad that is very capable of playing this way and hopefully we-ll be able to show that this season.

Michael Peters asks via email: You steadily become a more regular feature of the Jets first team over the last couple of years, what sort of target have you set yourself in terms of playing time in 2012/13?

TR: Obviously last year I was in and out of the first team, so this year I really want to cement my spot. Gary has built a very strong squad and there-s Josh Mitchell, Tiago and Connor Chapman who can all play centre-back as well, so there-s a lot of competition there.

It-s something that will only make me a better player and if everyone has that competitiveness, that-s going to make the team succeed.

Thomas McKain asks via email: How do you keep yourself motivated during such a long pre-season?

TR: We-ve broken the pre-season up quite well. We-ve been having six-week training blocks followed by a week off to recuperate and get some fire back in the belly.

It also helps that the whole pre-season has been with the ball rather than running up and down sand dunes or riding bikes around tracks and things like that. It-s been fun, it-s been intense and with everyone pushing to be in the first team it keeps us all on our toes.

Renee Carroll asks via email: Who is the funniest member of the Jets squad and why?

TR: Michael Bridges rates himself to be a bit of a character, but I think young Mitchell Oxborrow is probably up there. He-s young, he-s cheeky and he-s really good for a bit of banter. I think in years to come when he comes out of his shell, he-ll certainly be the prankster of the side.

Mark Osborn asks via email: What areas of your game are you looking to improve to make the next step up and become a regular starter in the A-League?

TR: My aerial presence, I want to be more dominant in the air. I also want to improve my decision-making with my passing to limit any stray passes out from the back line.

Morgan Hall asks via email: Which sportsperson do you admire most?

TR: I think Kelly Slater is very inspirational. He-s shown that no matter what age you are, if you put your mind to it you can still be the best. Obviously there-s a lot of young surfers coming through these days doing all the new you-beaut tricks, but he sticks to his guns and comes out on top.

You can see in modern-day football as well how experience can be such a great asset to have.

Alan Johnson asks via email: If you could be an Olympian in any other sport apart from football, what would you choose and why?

TR: Boxing, because in Olympic fights they-re allowed to wear headgear!

For next week-s Jets Insider interview head coach Gary van Egmond will answer YOUR questions. Simply tweet your question using the #JetsInsider hashtag or send your question to communications@huntersportsgroup.com by COB Wednesday. Then check back in Jets Insider next week to see if your question is answered.