Izzo adamant Reds can prevail past City
Paul Izzo is optimistic Adelaide United can snap their seven-match winless streak against Melbourne City when it matters most come Sunday night.
The pair meet in the second Elimination Final at Coopers Stadium with Izzo confident they can finally defeat a City side they have not beaten since January 2017.
Izzo insisted their inferior record against Warren Joyce’s team will be irrelevant if they can progress to the next round of the Finals Series.
This season the Reds suffered one loss and registered two draws against the Victorian outfit.
“They’ve obviously been our bogey team but what a time to get that first victory over them in the Finals,” he told reporters.
“That’s our main aim, we’re not too fussed about our record against them.
“I think if we do the most important job on Sunday that’s all that counts.”
Helping Adelaide’s cause is the fact Marco Kurz has a full squad to choose from for the must-win game.
The German named an unchanged squad to the one that put five goals past Brisbane Roar in the final round of the regular season.
Izzo said the team is buoyed by the fact that every player is raring to go and welcomed the selection headaches his coach will have.
“It’s good to have a squad that’s finally looking on the fitter side of things,” he said.
“Rather than what we’ve been dealt with during the season.
“We’ve always been having players coming back and going out.
“So it’s good to have a lot of numbers and I’m sure it’s a good headache for the coach to have as well, trying to decide who to put in the starting eleven.”
The 24-year-old goalkeeper is also set to make his 100th Hyundai A-League appearance on Sunday night.
Izzo deputised for the Reds in 2012, while playing under Eugene Galekovic and then moved to Central Coast Mariners three years later.
After two seasons learning his craft in Gosford, the Adelaide local returned home in 2017 and has since become the Reds’ number one shot-stopper.
“I don’t really count the first 25, it was a pretty tough time there,” he said.
“But it comes pretty quick, you don’t really realise and hopefully I can get another hundred to be honest, really enjoying it and it’s been great.”
Adelaide United host Melbourne City in a Hyundai A-League 2018/19 Elimination Final on Sunday, 5 May at Coopers Stadium. Kick-off is at 6.30pm ACST. Gates open 5.30pm.