Today marks two years since Brighton & Hove Albion signed goalkeeper Maty Ryan from Valencia.
Since arriving on the south coast back in the summer of 2017 following the club’s promotion to the Premier League, the Australia international has amassed an impressive 74 appearances in all competitions between the sticks across his two seasons for the Seagulls so far.
During his debut season in England, the Aussie stopper played every minute of Premier League action – 3,420 minutes to be exact, and it was a memorable campaign for everyone at the club as Albion secured their top-flight status with two matches to spare.
Highlights from Ryan’s first season for the Seagulls no doubt included a dramatic last-minute penalty save away to Stoke City in a 1-1 draw at the bet365 Stadium in February 2018, as well as a clean sheet in the club’s history-making, first-ever Premier League away victory four months earlier in a 3-0 win over West Ham United at the London Stadium in October 2017.
The final game on home soil of that season was an equally memorable and landmark 1-0 victory over Manchester United to secure Premier League safety, a game in which Ryan kept a clean sheet to ensure both he and the club would ply their trade in England’s top division for the 2018/19 campaign.
In between his two league campaigns in England so far, Ryan also represented his nation at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia – it was to be his second set of appearances in world football’s biggest tournament having appeared between the posts four years earlier in Brazil, playing all three group games against France, Denmark and Peru respectively in last year’s finals.
In the 2018/19 season, Ryan made 34 appearances in the Premier League – missing just four league games and two Emirates FA Cup contests in both December and January owing to his commitments with Australia at the 2019 Asia Cup, where the Socceroos reached the last eight.
The Australian returned to the fold at the end of the first month of the calendar year and played every remaining Premier League contest between then and the season’s end.
Stand-out moments from the goalkeeper’s second season in England no doubt included a fine performance in a penalty shootout victory against Millwall at The Den in the middle of March.
Ryan saved Mahlon Romeo’s spot-kick before Jake Cooper blazed over the bar to send the Seagulls to the Emirates FA Cup semi-finals for the first time in 36 years and set up a match with Manchester City at Wembley in the middle of April – a contest in which the keeper also played.
The stopper’s trademark runs through the length of the field in celebration to join his teammates are something which supporters have become accustomed to over the last few seasons, as have been his gestures of goodwill to fans after matches both at the Amex Stadium and on the road.
Life under Graham Potter begins for Ryan and his teammates when the squad report back for pre-season training at the end of this month, and the ever-present Aussie will be looking to pick up where he left off last season under the club’s new management team.