Mathew Ryan not ready to depart from Russia with gloves
The Australia goalkeeper has paid for 27 family members to come and watch him at the World Cup.
Australia’s potential progress to the World Cup knockout stage could cost goalkeeper Mathew Ryan financially but he will be more than happy to bear the burden.
The Brighton star has paid for 27 family members to come and watch him in Russia and he insists they have no intention of heading home early.
The Socceroos have to beat eliminated Peru in Sochi and hope already-qualified France defeat Denmark, currently second in Group C.
“I guess that’s the influence family have on you,” said the 26-year-old, whose extended family group ranges from a three-year-old cousin to his 70-something grandfather.
“They have been there along for the journey since I was born with my mother, they’ve witnessed every sacrifice and everything I’ve had to go through.
“It’s the first time, other than my mother and sister, I’ve paid for the family to come across and watch but the chance to share something like this with them was a no-brainer.
“Half of them said yes, half of them are still at home – which is a little bit better for the bank account I guess.
“Fortunately the life I lead now enables me now to try to give back to them but to share an experience like this with them is going to be something I will remember for the rest of my life.
“I hope they do too for the right reasons. Their plan is not to leave and ours isn’t either.”
Peru coach Ricardo Gareca insists he is not thinking about his future ahead of their final match while 34-year-old captain Paolo Guerrero has not ruled out being around for qualifying for Qatar 2022.
“We know once this is over we have to start thinking about the future but right now we are thinking about the match tomorrow,” said Gareca, who will be without striker Jefferson Farfan after he was admitted to hospital with concussion after a training-ground accident.
“Once this World Cup is over I will have to take a decision. The whole country wants an answer, the national team wants an answer.
“I understand it is reasonable I give a swift response but I can’t really tell you when that will happen. I have to make a decision soon.”
Guerrero – who had a 14-month suspension after testing positive for cocaine, which he maintains came from contaminated tea, temporarily lifted two weeks before the tournament – is hopeful of extending his international career.
“I don’t know if this will be the last match for me at a World Cup. I feel I can still contribute and play in the future,” he said.
“I don’t know how long the suspension will last. I will keep fighting for my career.”
Gareca admits the team suffered a scare when Lokomotiv Moscow striker Farfan was hospitalised with a “traumatic brain injury”.
“We were very concerned. He was unconscious for a couple of minutes,” he added.
“Unfortunately he cannot play tomorrow but the most important thing is he is recovering and will get well.”