Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Round 19 Preview - #ADLvWSW
Marco Kurz admits he is not entirely sure what to expect from Western Sydney Wanderers but stresses the onus is on Adelaide United to dictate the match on their terms being the home side.
The Reds face WSW at Coopers Stadium on Saturday night looking to extend their unbeaten streak to six matches.
Adelaide have not lost to their opponents this season, most recently defeating Markus Babbel’s team 2-1 at ANZ Stadium.
The Wanderers won just their third game of the campaign last round after beating Central Coast Mariners 2-0, and have two notable inclusions in their preliminary squad.
“I think they’re a team with a lot of problems but with a high quality,” Kurz told the media at a pre-match press conference.
“I don’t know which line-up they’ll start with, they’ve two injured players but also players that are coming back with (Alexander) Baumjohann and (Mark) Bridge.
“I don’t know if they will start, but we’ve prepared well for this game. In the last game they played with five at the back, they can also play 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3.
“I don’t know but it’s more up to us to show them it’s our home ground, and to show them we’re hungry and ready to fight for our position on the table.”
Vince Lia has been included in the German’s extended squad but has not appeared on the bench for the past two games due to the high competition for places in midfield.
Kurz insisted the Hyundai A-League should increase the number of substitutes allowed on the bench from the permitted five currently stipulated. He added it would also encourage coaches to give youth players more opportunities.
In the Spanish, English and French leagues seven players can be named on the bench, while up to 12 substitutes can be listed on a team sheet in Italy’s Serie A.
“He’s in the 18-player squad, but it’s always a hard decision not only for Vinnie,” he explained.
“The problem in Australia is that I can only have four (outfield) players on the bench.
“One of my ideas is to bring more players on the bench and it’s much easier for a coach to set up their squad, but also to give young players game time.
“If you’re in a comfortable situation in a game, you can give a young player ten minutes, now it’s not possible.
“In the end I must have a look at what’s the best, I need a defensive player, I need one midfielder and two offensive players – that means I don’t have the space for two midfielders.
“And the race is very close in our midfield position and I have to decide week to week.”
Kurz also provided an update on Nikola Mileusnić following the winger’s injury during last week’s clash against Melbourne City, saying: “It’s week per week but he’s out for the next two or three weeks (matches).
“It’s not really good at the moment, but we don’t expect it to be a long-term injury.
“But he’s out for the next two or three games.”
Adelaide United host Western Sydney Wanderers in Round 19 of the Hyundai A-League 2018/19 season on Saturday, 16 February at Coopers Stadium. Kick-off is at 7.20pm ACDT. Gates open 6.20pm.