Daniel Adlung says Adelaide United can take plenty of confidence from their performance against Sydney FC into Sunday night’s clash with Melbourne City at AAMI Park.
Adelaide will be boosted by the return of several players from international duty and injury in what is predicted to be a tightly contested top six match.
An undermanned Reds registered a gallant hard-fought 0-0 draw with the league leading Sky Blues at Coopers Stadium in Round 16.
Meanwhile, City twice came back to earn a 2-2 stalemate against Central Coast Mariners in Gosford.
The gallant draw with Sydney extended United’s unbeaten streak to three games.
Adlung said there were plenty of positives to take away from a match where many did not give Marco Kurz’s men a chance.
“I think it was a very good game against a big team,” he said.
“Especially with this line-up, I think the average age was twenty, twenty-two, but we take a lot of confidence from this game.”
The dynamic German midfielder is anticipating a difficult match with Warren Joyce’s side.
“We know the situation right now,” he said.
“I think both teams are in good shape and both teams are playing for the victory and we are ready.
“We expect a good opposition and with these guys back in the squad I think we have more quality.”
Adlung admitted it was great to have U-23 trio Paul Izzo, George Blackwood and Ben Garuccio back from Olyroos duty and stated they have no injury concerns.
“I think it’s always good for the players if you go with your national team,” he said.
“It’s always a good experience to play other countries.
“… I think they’re in a good shape with no injuries which is very important for us and I think they’re ready for tomorrow.”
The 30-year-old, who had spent his entire career in Germany before moving to Adelaide, said adapting to the stifling heat took some getting used to.
The Reds began training earlier in the morning this week due to the mercury climbing into the high 30s and low 40s.
“We trained very early but it doesn’t matter when you train because it’s still hot at nine o’clock in the morning,” he said.
“And for me especially the last two days were crazy, but it’s a new experience and your body has more inside than you think, so I can also now play in the heat.”
Last five meetings
0-2 loss @ Coopers Stadium
1-0 loss @ AAMI Park
2-1 win @ Coopers Stadium
2-1 loss @ AAMI Park
4-1 win @ Coopers Stadium
Adelaide United will face Melbourne City in Round 17 of the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 season on Sunday, 21 January at AAMI Park. Kick-off is at 6.30pm ACDT.