Newcastle winger Andrew Hoole says being free from the tactical restrictions he faced at Sydney FC has allowed him to deliver on his potential with the Jets.
With the pressure of expectation, Hoole, 23, endured a frustrating first season with the Sky Blues with limited game time.
His two-year contract ended prematurely and returned to his hometown.
After being sidelined by Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold, Hoole is a regular for Newcastle this season, scoring five times and recording the most successful crosses and corners in the A-League.
Reflecting on his season, Hoole said he was relishing the oppurtunity to play regular football and being a threat in the final third.
“Arnie was a coach built on tactics and a very structured manager,” he said speaking exclusively to FourFourtwo. “It’s a bit different with different coaches. It’s something that I had to adapt to there and I thought I did quite well. Obviously I didn’t start many games there at all and I didn’t have chance to show what I could do. I only started six games in the league out of 27 so it’s not easy when you don’t play.”
“I’ve been lacking that final product and it’s good to get some goals this season and have those stats with the crosses. It’s really important for me as a player and I’ve still got nine games to go in the league and I want to make sure I can improve on that.”
While the winger is in career-best form, Hoole denies that his resurgence with Newcastle was motivated by proving the doubters wrong.
“I don’t think it was that I had something to prove to anyone,” he said. “I backed my ability so it’s about being confident and that’s what I was trying to do. I came back and I worked hard and I’m still working hard now. It didn’t really work out at Sydney and I came back full of confidence. I just wanted to get some minutes under my belt, so it’s good that I’m playing well now and getting those minutes.”
Meanwhile Hoole applauded the rescheduling of the Jets home fixture from Saturday afternoon to tonight due to the extreme heat that the Hunter region experienced on Saturday.
“It’s good that they are starting to take notice of the heat and make sure that some games are cancelled,” he said. "It’s very difficult to give 100%, obviously, you want to play but the heat plays a big factor as well. So it’s good for the players."
With Newcastle sitting just outside the top six, Hoole was hopeful of a Jets win against second-placed Melbourne Victory tonight.
“Looking at their team they have done quite well this season,” he said. “They have strong players especially in the front third with James Troisi, Marcos Rojas, Besart Berisha and Fahid Ben Khalfallah. But we need to make sure we are focused on our job and that is to get the three points.”