Post-match notes from Verbeek following Newcastle win


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Gertjan Verbeek reflected on Adelaide United’s 1-0 FFA Cup Quarter Final win over 10-man Newcastle Jets at Coopers Stadium on Tuesday night.

Al Hassan Toure scored his fourth goal in three matches after being alert to Glen Moss’ error to book the defending Champions a place in the semi-finals for a third successive year.

Here is a transcript of Verbeek’s post-match press conference.

Verbeek’s thoughts about the overall game…

First-half good, second-half not so good. And we had a lot of chances in the first-half. We had to make more goals in the first-half and the beginning of the second-half the same. Two big chances I think and then last half hour I don’t know what my team was thinking. They changed a little in the midfield it was a little difficult for us to get pressure on it all the time, but also I think they wanted to defend the 1-0 lead. That’s not good because we got tired but they’ve to get more tired because they’ve 10 men. And also in the last few moments they had some possibilities that we can blame ourselves and not the opponents.

Verbeek on being more expressive and motioning Strain to push forward…

We talked at half-time we don’t have to change a lot because there was a lot of space on the sides, left and right. And we did it well with crosses and also the second ball – every time it fell to us. Keep that going I said, but the left side in the second-half was more defended by the opponent than the right side. The right side they kept open because the 10 (Dimitri Petratos) was leaving there to go play in the middle. And the only thing that Ben and Strainy did was running with the ball and going inside and losing the ball and then you get the counter. A lot of space behind Strainy and because the number 10 is playing in the middle now he’s the man that starts every attack. So for Mirko it was difficult to defend him and in the last five minutes we were only running back when we lost the ball and we had one man over and that wasn’t good. And then we were a little bit lucky in the end but I think in the whole game we won and there was only one team who deserved to win because we played well in the first-half and the first hour I would say.

I can say something about the red card. I think the goalkeeper was a little bit too late and I hope to play 11 against 11 for once. It was a long time that we played 11 against 11. It was 11 against 10 and you know it’s difficult even for a team so early in the season. We’ve played five games and then you know when you play against 10 you’ve to make the play, not giving a lot of space away. You saw in the first 10 to 15 minutes when the match was 11 against 11 there was some good possibilities already for us.

It can happen (being reduced to 10 men) and we showed in the last half hour of the first-half that we can do it very well and even the beginning of the second-half was also okay, but then we made the mistake by not bringing the ball, tempo was going down, the organisation (wasn’t great). Strainy and Kitto were playing much too high in the first-half they were not standing there, but they were coming there and then they were standing there. So it was too static and the opponent did not really have many problems with the attacking from Adelaide in the second-half and that’s up to us to make it better and to do it better. Of course, you don’t play a lot of games against 10 men but in the end it’s not lucky we were better.

Quarter Final

Verbeek on Toure’s improvement and potentially being the number one striker…

He played against two amateur teams so the defenders will be less good than the defenders here from Newcastle. I think also today he showed what his possibilities are. Not the whole game but in moments. He’s strong, he can keep the ball and he’s a goal getter because not every striker is running for that shot from Kitto. If he wasn’t there it’s no goal, so that’s Toure and he’s 19. So Kristian has to do his best to replace him.

Verbeek on balancing out the last half hour vs the first hour…

The last half hour was not negative, but it’s always the same problem when your play against 10 men. We do less and they do more and they will make the spaces small. They stand on the 18-yard box, they bring in the number 44 (Nikolai Topor-Stanley), a tall guy because we had a lot of crosses, and then you’ve to bring the crosses from the other side where the tall guy is not standing there. So we’ve to learn from that, it’s a young team. If you see Riley he’s 20 and he didn’t do enough in the 18-yard box against such an opponent. And also in defence I said at half-time, we have one man extra so he has to push on the central defender. A strange one he didn’t do it so I’ll ask him tomorrow why. But I don’t think it’s attitude or that he doesn’t want it. I think it’s a question of tactics of being grown up. If you see how Pacifique is coming in that’s not good.

But the intentions are good from the players. They work hard, they do their best and they want to and then you’ve to help them. So we’ve to learn from this game and hopefully they learn quick. And it’s better now to make some mistakes without costing the result because the result is there – we’re in the semi-final. So it was not all negative the second-half. I think physically we did a great job. If you see how many runs we made and how high the tempo is and I think the first chance for them came in the 86th or 87th minute, something like that. And the shot was blocked on the 18-yard box, Paul Izzo had I think in the last five minutes more of the ball in his hands than he did in the whole game. So that’s not a negative but it could be better and that’s what we want. We want to be better.  

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