Karlović hoping for big Coopers Stadium crowd
Ivan Karlović is excited about Adelaide United Women playing at Coopers Stadium on Thursday night, and is expecting a different set of challenges against Canberra United.
The Head Coach has overseen the Reds’ promising start to the Westfield W-League 2018/19 season.
United drew 0-0 against Melbourne Victory in Round 1 before securing a disciplined 1-0 win over Brisbane Roar three weeks later.
Karlović said his players are looking forward to taking to the field at Coopers Stadium in the stand-alone fixture - their first home fixture of the year as well.
“It’s a great opportunity for our playing group to play at Coopers Stadium,” Karlović said.
“And a privilege to play in a stand-alone fixture, it just goes to show just how far the game has evolved in women’s football.
“We’re looking forward to getting out here and hopefully getting a big crowd and put on a good performance.”
Karlović acknowledged that it was a unique situation to manage starting the season and then having two weeks’ off due to a bye and then the international break, before their clash with the Roar.
However, he said in retrospect the short hiatus proved quite beneficial.
“It wasn’t easy because you sort of prepared yourself for Round 1, you went and played and then all of a sudden it was almost like you were into pre-season again,” he explained.
“So we had to keep them focused and it gave us an opportunity to continue to work hard on a few things, play a couple of trial matches and also give a couple of the players that were a little bit underdone from a conditioning point of view.
“It gave them more of an opportunity to get themselves up to the level required.
“So in hindsight it was probably a good little break for us but we would’ve obviously have loved to continue to play.”
Karlović was content with his side’s performance in the win over Brisbane, though stressed his side’s focus has now entirely shifted.
“We were happy with the majority of the game,” he said.
“Obviously the result first and foremost was what we wanted to achieve.
“We still need to continue to improve in areas and the girls know that and recognise that, so we’ll look to continue to do that as we go over the next few weeks.
“But our attention has completely turned to Canberra now post-Brisbane.”
On Thursday night’s opponents, Karlović is wary of their quality and said the Capital outfit provide a different test.
But the former MetroStars defender said his side will be ready to compete, and said they cannot afford to rest on their laurels following a solid start to the campaign.
“They’re good side and they’ve shown that they can score goals,” he continued.
“They scored four in that one game against Perth, so they’ve the potency up front to score.
“They’ve got some good players in their side and they work really hard.
“So they’ve started off the season relatively well and it’s going to be another test for us.
“Another challenge, a different challenge so it’s something we’re looking forward to and hopefully we can be prepared and make sure we don’t rest on what we’ve done so far.
“Because it’s only the start and we need to continue to work hard and build towards making finals.”
Adelaide United host Canberra United in Round 4 of the Westfield W-League 2018/19 season on Thursday, 22 November at Coopers Stadium. Kick-off is at 7.00pm ACDT. Gates open at 6.00pm.