Oxborrow looking to lead Young Roos

Mitch Oxborrow has expressed his desire to be a leader for the Young Socceroos at the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.

Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets midfielder Mitchell Oxborrow has expressed his desire to be a leader for the Young Socceroos at the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.

Oxborrow, along with Newcastle Jets Youth team player Nick Cowburn, has been selected to represent Australia at the COTIF International U-19 Tournament in Spain this month.

The tournament will be used by the Young Socceroos as preparation for the first stage of AFC qualifying for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

Having already represented Australia at U-17 and U-20 level, Oxborrow is one of the squad-s more experienced players when it comes to the international arena.

The 18-year-old has already set his sights on being a leader and potential captain of the Young Socceroos.

“To represent your country is what you want to do as a young player,” Oxborrow said.

“To be in my own age group and be one of the older boys in the squad, it-s up to me to take charge and be sort of like a captain and be a leader.

“More than anything I think in the past six to eight weeks I-ve been more consistent.

“My work ethic has made me perform at a better level and obviously that hard work has paid off and I-ve got in the squad, which is tremendous.

“I want to be in the squad and I want to get to that World Cup.”

Oxborrow will head into camp with the Young Socceroos on Wednesday, before travelling to Spain for the tournament, which is scheduled to take place between August 12 and August 21.

“I-ve got a few friends from Perth and back when I was at the AIS who are in the squad as well, so it will be good to catch up and good to play some football with them again,” Oxborrow said.

“There-s the likes of Spain and Saudi Arabia at the tournament and I think we also play Qatar and Mexico.

“The biggest game will be against Spain of course, with all the hype around their senior team.

“I think at this age you-re always going to have hard games, no matter who you play.”

After getting his first taste of A-League action against Perth Glory in Round 11 last season, Oxborrow said he is determined to make a big impact in the competition in 2013/14.

“I think this year is going to be a big year for me,” Oxborrow said.

“Last year I think I was just getting to terms (with everything). My attitude wasn-t the best and I was just happy being a squad member.

“This year I-ve got a lot more hunger and I want to fight for my spot and make some appearances for the Jets and represent the club.”

Oxborrow said the rapid rise of Jets teammate and fellow central midfielder Josh Brillante had given him confidence he could achieve something similar.

“Seeing a player like Brillante, he is similar to the way I play and he-s played so well.

“He was consistent and that-s the main thing you-ve got to do when you do get that chance, be consistent and just perform week-in, week-out.

“It-s just the sharpness. If you-re only playing youth football week-in, week-out you can lose you first touch and your quickness of thinking and things like that.

“Being with the senior squad for the past year I think I-ve improved an enormous amount.”

Meanwhile, Oxborrow said he expected Cowburn to be a key figure for the Australian squad at the COTIF International U-19 Tournament.

“He came into one of our camps earlier and he was the starting centre-back in the squad,” he said.

“I thought he did really well and I was impressed with him. Hopefully when we go to Spain he starts again and does well for the Jets this season too.”