Adelaide United Head Coach, Marco Kurz, is confident of upsetting ladder leaders Sydney FC, despite missing players to injury and international duty for Sunday night’s clash at Coopers Stadium.
It will be the fifth game in 20 days for the Reds and the congested period has seen many players sustain knocks and niggling injuries.
Apostolos Stamatelopoulos salvaged a point for the Reds in a 1-1 draw against Western Sydney Wanderers on Wednesday, while the Sky Blues cruised to a 3-0 win at Brisbane Roar.
Speaking at the pre-match press conference, Kurz lauded the strengths of Sydney and said despite being undermanned they will fight for the victory.
“They’re the best team and they’ve a lot of experience and also a lot of creative players in the offensive line,” he said.
“They’ve players in the box that if they’ve one chance they can score a goal like Bobo.
“And also their number ten and eleven (Milos Ninkovic and Adrian Mierzejewski) they’re beautiful players and very good players.
“We will see but in one game against each team we have a chance for a good result and for this result we’ll fight.”
Kurz also had some words of encouragement for the younger players and anyone else who is given an opportunity, but was cognisant that with youth comes inconsistency.
“I say enjoy, have fun and believe (in yourself)” he said.
“I think that’s important and I think tomorrow we can win a game or learn about the situation.
“And for the young players it’s good, they’ve no pressure they’re playing against the best team and it’s a good process for the boys.
“We are happy with the performance of the young players.
“I think you saw in the last game (against Western Sydney) we started with a completely new formation, a new line-up and we only had one session to prepare.
“… But I also know that young players can play one day good and on the next day they can make mistakes but if you know this you’ll be okay.”
The German went on to provide an update on Tarek Elrich, who continues his recovery from an anterior cruciate ligament injury he suffered in April last year.
“I think he has the last medical test next week and if the test is positive then he’s ready for the full team training,” he revealed.
“It looks good but we must wait for the final test.”
Last five meetings
0-1 loss @ Coopers Stadium
2-0 loss @ Allianz Stadium
0-4 loss @ Coopers Stadium
0-0 draw @ Allianz Stadium
0-2 win @ Allianz Stadium
Adelaide United host Sydney FC in Round 16 of the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 season on Sunday, 14 January at Coopers Stadium. Kick-off is at 6.30pm ACDT.