22/04/2024

Amy Sayer (Photo: The Matildas)

Since fellow Matilda Clare Polkinghorne arrived at Damallsvenkan club Kristianstads DFF, young midfielder Amy Sayer has thrived under her tutelage.

Despite missing a place in the FIFA Women’s World Cup squad, Amy Sayer has made her way into the side ahead of the Olympic Qualifiers against Uzbekistan.

She comes into camp alongside her Kristianstads DFF teammate and most capped Matilda Clare Polkinghorne. At 22-year-old, Sayer is starting to cement her spot within the Matildas pecking-order which will see her earn more appearances in the green and gold.

She spoke ahead of the Olympic Qualifiers against Uzbekistan.

“[This season with Kristianstads DFF has] been fantastic, I think coming in halfway through the season last year, I was really thrown in the deep-end and I really just had to get the real nuts and bolts of how our playing style was,” Sayer said.

“It’s nice to come right at the beginning of the pre-season with a new team and with a new coaching staff, just to settle into the new dynamics and the new tactics that we’ve got.

“I think having ‘Polks’ there as well is a nice addition, so we are the two resident Aussies in the south of Sweden and I think that that’s really nice and to have a fellow Matilda there as well.”

Sayer continued to explain the impact that Polkinghorne has on the group at Kristianstads DFF which is magnified by the inexperience and youth of the team.

“It’s really great to have ‘Polks’ around,” she said.

“She has that wealth of experience that even though we play different positions, I’m always learning from her.

“Her demeanour as well is amazing, we have a really young team so I think it’s great to have the leadership that ‘Polks’ brings and her experience.

“I think I’m learning from her everyday, I think our younger players are learning from her everyday and I think that she just adds a huge benefit for our team.”

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Initially coming into the squad in 2018 during the Tournament of Nations, Sayer has been around the set-up as a very raw and young talent. She describes how more experience at a higher level and more time around the team has made her feel comfortable at the Matildas.

“I do feel more comfortable around the whole team and even though I did miss out on the World Cup squad I think the preparation leading into that meant that I could get closer to a lot of the players so that it’s a lot easier when I came in to the team,” Sayer continued.

“Being more of an older player or middle-aged within the team, it really helps and I think I have that maturity [and] that strength that comes with my experience now, but I think it’s really nice to be more consistent and to have that certainty.”

One big talking point before the Olympic Qualifiers has been the loss of the Matildas captain Sam Kerr. As one of the most important players within the side, her absence sees an opportunity given to the likes of returning Matilda Michelle Heyman or Sayer herself.

Sayer said she is confident that the team tactics will help the team ‘close the gap’.

“I think that the tactics of the team and the principles that have been laid down since the beginning of Tony’s tenure have really helped us close that gap a little bit,” she explained.

“I know that I play a similar position and I know that I have been the substitute for her.

“I’m that 9 or 10 role in [an] attacking midfield, I’m not trying to fill her shoes exactly because she is that special player. 

“But I think I have similar qualities and some different ones as well that can help provide a benefit to the team.”

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