Western Sydney Wanderers defender Tate Russell says the toughest part of his A-League promotion has been the increase in physicality.

Son of NRL great Ian Russell – the 19-year old has made 10 appearances this season under Markus Babbel.

Despite having a Rugby League background – the Wanderers highlighted the significance for youth to adapt quickly to the increase in physicality in the A-League.

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“The pace of the game is completely different when stepping up to the A-League,” Russell said.

“You always need to be switched on especially against the top sides because they’ll punish you.

“I’ve had to learn to cope with the bigger bodies, it’s something I’ve had to deal with.

“[Dad] has taught me many things especially around being a professional.”

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Russell was also part of the most recent Olyroos camp – taken under Socceroos head coach Graham Arnold.

“We played under [Arnold’s] style in the camp,” Russell said.

“In the Olyroos you’ve got to adapt especially when you want to get picked for tournaments.

“There’s always someone right behind you to take your spot so you always have to be ready.”

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Athos Sirianos
athos@footballnationradio.com.au