Tackling the high flying Wanderers on Sunday could be just what the doctor ordered for the Reds to rebound from two lean results on the field and a week of turmoil off it.
According to playmaker Dario Vidosic, tackling the high flying Western Sydney Wanderers at Hindmarsh Stadium on Sunday could be just what the doctor ordered for the Reds to rebound from two lean results on the field and a week of turmoil off it.
The Reds enter their match against the Hyundai A-League-s new boys, who have been arguably the season-s biggest surprise packets, off the back of two defeats and the abrupt resignation of former Coach John Kosmina.
Generally it would not be seen as an ideal lead in to a pair of massive consecutive home games against the sides that leapfrogged United on the table last weekend, but Vidosic begs to differ.
As almost always happens when there is a change of coach, Vidosic says it has created a new found urgency and lease of life on the squad, the players ultra determined to put the recent events and results behind them.
“It has been a really good reaction this week and hopefully we can put it all together and make a good performance of it on Sunday and get back in the winner-s circle,” Vidosic said.
“This week we want to set it all right and put the last two negative results and our coach leaving behind us. There are a lot of positives in the week we-ve had, good training sessions and everyone has got a really good buzz about them and the focus is fully on Western Sydney and Sunday-s game.”
The Reds- number 10, who continues to lead United-s scoring this season with eight goals despite not finding the back of the net in the past four games, could well find himself at the pointy end of the Reds- formation on Sunday due to the suspension to Jeronimo Neumann and fellow striker Bruce Djite having only just fully recovered from a groin injury.
Whether or not he gets the nod to lead the line, Vidosic is ready to slot in and do a job regardless of where on the field he is required.
“If I get that role (playing up front) I-ll follow the instructions I-ve been given, so if I go up there I-ll be really looking forward to the challenge against probably the best defence in the A-League,” Vidosic said.
The Wanderers are only second to the league leading Central Coast Mariners when it comes to the fewest goals conceded this season. In just their first season, Tony Popovic-s team impressively sit third having won their past three games and seven out of their last nine.
Not that Vidosic needed reminding that one of those seven wins was a 6-1 result against the Reds at Parramatta Stadium back in Round 12, but he says Sunday-s rematch is about more than avenging that score line.
“We-re not happy with how we lost but we-re not going out to try and get revenge, it-s a normal game, there are three points on offer and we-re just looking for the win,” Vidosic said.
While the Wanderers carry ominous form into the clash, the Reds also boast a formidable home record this season and Vidosic intends to keep it that way as United looks to climb back up into the top two.
“It-s been very hard to beat us here and we don-t want that to change, so we-re ready to go and what better test than one of the in form teams of the competition,” Vidosic said.
“We-re only six points off and there are still nine games to go so it-s all to play for and there-s no better way than against Western Sydney and then Melbourne Victory the week after, so it-s two games at home, top four showdowns and we-re ready.”
Djite and Iain Fyfe have been included in an extended squad for new interim coach Michael Valkanis- first game in charge, Vidosic stating the priority in the build up has centred around getting back to playing the football that has had them in the top third of the table for the majority of the season.
“He (Valkanis) is putting his plans to work and we just need to push and pull in the same direction as a squad,” Vidosic said.
“We-ve got a lot of quality and we just need to put it all together…the important thing is to get the consistency back, start scoring and start winning again.”
The Reds will have a final training session on Saturday afternoon before Sunday-s 4.30pm kick-off.
Hyundai A-League 2012/13 Season – Week 19
ADELAIDE UNITED FC v WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS
Sunday 3 February 2013, Hindmarsh Stadium
Kick-Off: 4.30pm ACDT
Referee: Chris Beath
TV: LIVE & Exclusive on Fox Sports 1
Radio: Score updates on 891 ABC Adelaide
Twitter: https://twitter.com/adelutd_fc (hash tag #REDSvWSW)
Adelaide United squad: 1.Eugene Galekovic (gk) (c), 3.Nigel Boogaard, 4.Jon McKain, 5.Iain Fyfe, 6.Cassio, 8.Marcelo Carrusca, 10.Dario Vidosic, 11.Bruce Djite, 12.Antony Golec, 14.Cameron Watson, 16.Daniel Bowles, 17.Iain Ramsay, 18.Fabian Barbiero, 19.Jake Barker-Daish, 20.Paul Izzo (gk), 23.Evan Kostopoulos
*one to be omitted
Ins: Iain Fyfe (promoted), Bruce Djite (returns from injury)
Outs: Jeronimo Neumann (suspended – 1 match)
Unavailable: Fabio Ferreira (groin – 3 weeks)
Western Sydney Wanderers squad: 1.Ante Covic (gk), 2.Shannon Cole, 3.Adam D-Apuzzo, 4.Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 5.Michael Beauchamp, 7.Labinot Haliti, 8.Mateo Poljak, 9.Dino Kresinger, 10.Aaron Mooy, 11.Tarek Elrich, 13.Joey Gibbs, 14.Kwabena Appiah-Kubi, 15.Reece Caira, 16.Rocky Visconte, 17.Youssouf Hersi, 18.Lacopo La Rocca, 19.Mark Bridge, 20.Jerrad Tyson (gk), 21.Shinji Ono, 23.Jason Trifiro
*five to be omitted
Ins: Shannon Cole, Reece Caira, Tarek Elrich, Joey Gibbs, Jason Trifiro, Rocky Visconte (all promoted)
Outs: Jerome Polenz (suspended one match)
Unavailable: Tahj Minniecon (foot – indefinite)
Adelaide United vs. Western Sydney Wanderers – Hyundai A-League HEAD TO HEAD Record
Played 2 – 1 win, 1 loss
At Hindmarsh Stadium
Played 1; Adelaide United 1
Last time they met in the Hyundai A-League
21-Dec-2012 Week 12, Hyundai A-League 2012/13 Season at Parramatta Stadium
Western Sydney Wanderers 6 (Bridge 18-/45-/58-, Kresinger 45+2-, Ono 52-, Gibbs 90-)
Adelaide United FC 1 (Vidosic 68-)