Hyundai A-League 2017/18 Round 18 Preview – #WELvADL


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Adelaide United defender, Ben Garuccio, says the Reds have moved on from last weekend’s loss and are solely focused on beating Wellington Phoenix at Westpac Stadium on Saturday.

The Reds will be desperately looking for a response across the Tasman following their 5-0 defeat to Melbourne City in Round 17.

Meanwhile, the Phoenix are experiencing a purple patch and have claimed recent scalps over Melbourne Victory and Newcastle Jets in the process.

It is the second encounter between the two sides after playing out a 1-1 draw in the opening round of the season.

Garuccio said the morale within the dressing room has remained upbeat.

“The mood has been good, we have to be positive,” he said at Adelaide Airport.

“We are going over to Wellington it is always a tough place to go, but we just need to be focused and hopefully get three points over there.”

A positive omen for the Reds is that they are undefeated in their previous six meetings with Saturday’s opponents and moreover have lost just once in their past seven visits to the ‘cake tin’.

However, Head Coach, Marco Kurz, will not have the luxury of calling on Captain Isaías, who is suspended for the clash.

The dynamic full-back admitted while it was a blow, he was confident whoever steps in will do a sufficient job.

“It’s obviously disappointing when you’re missing your Captain, he’s a real leader for us,” he said.

“And he really starts the play for us, but we have got lots of good midfielders.

“You’ve seen in the last couple of weeks, Jordan O’Doherty has had a shot, he’s showed really good signs last year and he’s done really well in the games that he’s played.

“We have got young boys like that who can step in, we still have the experience of Daniel Adlung in there so we’ll be fine to fill that void in the middle.”

As alluded to, the Phoenix are unbeaten in three matches, but the 22-year-old maintained sticking to their tactics will be key.

“They’re playing some good football, they’ve obviously made a couple of signings,” said Garuccio, who also believes the cooler playing conditions in Wellington will benefit United after training in much warmer temperatures this week.

“And they’re coming in and doing well but we just have to play our own game.

“I think it’s never easy going over there with the conditions and everything, but we’ve got no excuses.

“We are fit, we are firing and we have had a good week on the track, we are well recovered so we have got no excuses to take the game to them and get all three points.”

Last five meetings

1-1 draw @ Westpac Stadium

2-2 draw @ Coopers Stadium

0-0 draw @ Westpac Stadium

2-0 win @ Coopers Stadium

0-4 win @ Westpac Stadium

Adelaide United will face Wellington Phoenix in Round 18 of the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 season on Saturday, 27 January at Westpac Stadium. Kick-off is at 5.05pm ACDT.

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