Stenta: Wellington win was Reds’ reward for effort

Adelaide United Liberty A-League coach Adrian Stenta says he hopes his side’s victory over Wellington will be the catalyst for more wins going forward.

The come-from-behind 2-1 result was the Reds’ first win of the season and came off the back of goals to Emily Condon and Nanako Sasaki.

Speaking after the game at Marden Sports Complex, Stenta said he always knew his side’s best was good enough but it hadn’t been able to play with enough consistency across or in games.

He was particularly pleased with the way his side held firm after conceding in the 21st minute, and while he said the result was reward for effort, he warned it would mean nothing if the team did not back it up next week against Western Sydney.

Adrian Stenta on his initial response to the performance:

“I know results haven’t gone our way but sometimes in our game results can be misleading so I feel like we’ve had more positive moments in recent weeks than negative. We’ve just continued to concede some sloppy goals and switch off in key moments, then haven’t got the rub of the green at times as well. I feel like today, we were able to play positively for longer and that gave us an opportunity to stay in the game and pinch a result.”

Adrian Stenta on his side’s strong opening and ability to hold firm despite going a goal behind:

“I feel like the last three weeks or three games, our first halves have been pretty good so we were pretty good against Brisbane, I think we were pretty good for the majority of the game against Western United and although we did give up some big chances against Wellington, I thought we started quite well, too. What we really wanted to address this week is the middle part of the game, that sort of 40 to 65th minute where I think we’ve been lacking a little bit and we were able to come out of that and persevere and get through.

“I think it’s super important because if you look at some of our games, we’ve conceded goals in quick succession. So one-nil is a very different game to being two nil, which happened against Sydney, happened against Victory and happened against a few teams where we concede too quickly, like Canberra back in round one. I think the response to conceding a goal and bending but not breaking as you say, was really positive and pleasing to see.”

Adrian Stenta on what he changed up at half time, having been one-nil down:

“We spoke about just being a little bit more aggressive, and being quicker and more proactive to get pressure on the ball because we felt like the lines, the gap between the lines was too big. We just tried to tighten it up, be a little bit more compact, both vertically and horizontally and get a bit more pressure on the ball and that enabled us to not give up as many big chances in the second half as we did in the first.”

Adrian Stenta on his side getting its first win for the season:

“I’m just really pleased for the girls to get the reward for their effort because I’ve been telling them all year, their best is good enough and we just need to be able to do that more consistently across 90 minutes. Hopefully they take this result, it gives them a lot of confidence moving forward, and we can continue on with it next week because to be honest, it doesn’t mean much if we don’t perform again next week.

“I don’t tend to look at results as much. It’s more about the performance, are we getting better week by week, but it is difficult as a player to keep fronting up week after week if you aren’t getting that reward for your effort so I’m pleased that they got that today and hopefully they can do that for the rest of the year.”