Lessons from Lazio fuel Ikonomidis at WSW

Emma Kemp
AAP

In a way, playing alongside Mark Bridge and Josh Risdon has been as much a revelation for Chris Ikonomidis as his days on the training pitch with Miroslav Klose and Lucas Leiva.

The environments at A-League side Western Sydney and Serie A giants Lazio could not be further apart, yet both have informed the 22-year-old's development in what is shaping as a bright career.

Ikonomidis was the standout in the Wanderers' 4-0 defeat of Wellington, a picture of pep and skill that scored one excellent goal and had a strong part in another.

More impressive was it marked the six-time Socceroos winger's first start since arriving on loan from Lazio 10 days ago in a bid for more minutes.

He made the most of all 90 on Sunday in a performance that, if built upon, could bring him back into Socceroos calculations in a World Cup year.

Ikonomidis was quick to spread the credit around his temporary Wanderers teammates and coach Josep Gombau.

"The players and staff have been excellent and helped me in every way to make this impact possible," Ikonomidis told AAP.

"The coach gives me a lot of belief and freedom on the pitch. He gives all the players a lot of freedom.

"That just compliments your natural talents. It gets the best out of me."

The temporary move home in Sydney was an endeavour to get more game time after struggling to break into the Lazio first team and spending time loaned out in Serie B and Denmark.

While not the main motivation, a Socceroos recall was also a factor in the move.

But just as Ikonomidis has been quick to thrive in the A-League, the Sutherland Sharks product says he's also benefited from being in a big overseas club where the pace is more intense and the competition more cut-throat.

"It's a different pace to Australia," he said.

"In my time I've been at Lazio I've played with guys like Klose and Candreva and Lucas Leiva.

"These guys have made it to the top in world sport so you just learn off them and take away everything competing with them day in, day out in training.

"Working with them for four years has been priceless for experience."

The sixth-placed Wanderers play Newcastle on Friday night.