Manickum leading the way for United video

JACKSON THOMAS/STUFF.CO.NZ

Waitakere goal-scoring ace reflects on a solid start to the national football season.

In his own words, 2016 has been "a physical and emotional roller coaster" for Waitakere United's Dylan Manickum. 

The wing-man has been a goal-scoring revelation for the western club this season, doubling his previous goal scoring numbers already - with 14 weeks remaining in the national football premiership. 

"It's been a long season but the boys are acclimatising to the workload now," he says.

Dylan Manickum and Southern United's Cam McPhail fight for possession in last weekend's drawn premiership match.
David Joseph / Phototek.nz

Dylan Manickum and Southern United's Cam McPhail fight for possession in last weekend's drawn premiership match.

However while United might only be into their fifth week of premiership action, Manickum has played more football this season than any previous years.

He is coming in off the back of a 22 week long division one championship winning season with Waitakere City. On top of that, City managed to win their way through to the Chatham Cup final, a feat few would have expected the lowly seeded side to achieve.

Though City would eventually lose the match in extra time, Manickum says the season on the whole was "one to remember".

Waitakere United's Dylan Manickum is relishing the heavy workload he has put on himself this season.
Jackson Thomas

Waitakere United's Dylan Manickum is relishing the heavy workload he has put on himself this season.

"Great season. Nobody expected us to go that deep, let a lone make the final, so although we were disappointed you can't be mad at the year on the whole."

Manickum quickly shrugged off that disappointment to take his place as one of United's key scoring threats in their push for the national premiership. 

After a big first up win against rivals Auckland City FC, Waitakere have had a mixed few weeks with one win, one draw and one loss. They currently sit second on the competition ladder.

"We are getting there, you can feel it," says Manickum.

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"Defensively we have been sound all year, we are kind of buzzing as a team it has just been the little lapses in concentration that have let us down. We are creating a lot of opportunities, just need to put them away."

Putting them away has come relatively easy to Manickum this year and though playing outside of the likes of Keegan Linderboom and former All White Jake Butler has made life easier for him, Manickum says his indoor-football experience earlier this year has certainly helped take his game to another level. 

He is a member of the New Zealand Futsal side and says he has seen a lot of those skills transition to the 11-a-side game.

"You get a whole lot more touches on the ball and shots on goal so it works on all areas of your game. It's been awesome for me," he says.

Manickum will again be a key man for United this weekend when they face fellow Aucklanders Eastern Suburbs away. Kick off is at 2pm with the match broadcast live on Sky Sports.

 

 

 - Stuff

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