Adelaide United will be in search of a reaction when they face fierce rivals Melbourne Victory at Marvel Stadium on Saturday night.
The Reds endured an inexplicable 5-2 loss last weekend against Western Sydney Wanderers and need to display an improved defensive performance if they are to make it five straight wins against Victory.
After an intense week on the training ground, Gertjan Verbeek is confident Adelaide can bounce back.
“We still have to deal with some injured players so we have to be creative,” Verbeek told reporters at a press conference at Adelaide Airport.
“And of course you try to find a solution for the bad defence we had in the last game.
“And we hope we find a good strategy against Melbourne Victory because I assume they will play different than our former opponent (Western Sydney Wanderers).
“So I hope we are in good shape we have beaten them twice (this season) and I hope we can beat them again.”
— Adelaide United (@AdelaideUnited) February 27, 2020
Victory are winless in their past six Hyundai A-League games with interim coach Carlos Salvachua still seeking his maiden league triumph.
But while Adelaide have dominated this fixture in recent times, they have only won twice at Marvel Stadium, which previously occurred in December 2017.
Verbeek acknowledged United must be better defensively though equally affirmed he does not want to see his side’s attacking style compromised.
The Dutchman insisted he will not revert to negative tactics such as park the bus and sit numbers behind the ball.
“I’ve said already before I don’t change my mind because we lost 5-2 in the last game,” he said.
“We are not playing defensive football, we want to attack, we want to play active football, we want to press them on the high position.
“That’s a process that the players have to learn. It’s easy to fall back and say to your striker come behind the (centre) circle, small pitch, no space behind the last line.
“Of course you will have less goals against, but then you will also score less goals, so I also want to play and look to my team and be proud and enjoy.
“Sometimes you have to defend because the opponent is stronger, but if not you have to attack, you have to be creative and you can only be creative if you play offensive (football).”
Reds midfielder, James Troisi is back, however Ben Halloran has been ruled out with a minor hamstring strain.
Adelaide United face Melbourne Victory in Round 21 of the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season on Saturday, 29 February at Marvel Stadium. Kick-off is at 7.00pm ACDT. Live and Exclusive on Fox Sports, Kayo Sports and the My Football Live App.