Kosmina calls for composed Reds against Bunyodkor

Adelaide United FC is less than 48 hours out from its opening its AFC Champions League 2012 campaign against Bunyodkor in Tashkent, and despite the size of the task in front of them, Coach John Kosmina does not think a positive first up result is beyond the Reds.

Adelaide United FC is less than 48 hours out from its opening its AFC Champions League 2012 campaign against Bunyodkor in Tashkent, and despite the size of the task in front of them, Coach John Kosmina does not think a positive first up result is beyond the Reds.

On the grand stage of Asia-s best club competition and up against the Uzbekistan league winners, a club constantly known as one of the best in their league, the Reds could be excused for feeling like serious outsiders in the contest.

Add to this that the Reds sit ninth on the Hyundai A-League table coupled with the fact that their first AFC Champions League game is in vastly unfamiliar surroundings and conditions in Uzbekistan, and many may not give United much hope.

But this is not how Kosmina sees it. He believes the chance for the Reds to start with a clean slate and that they are well into their Hyundai A-league season should give the squad belief, providing they do not become overawed.

“I think they (the players) have just got to stay composed, not get too carried away with the occasion,” Kosmina said.

“The effort will always be there, it will just be a matter of how we go on the night. I guess the beauty is Bunyodkor are still in pre season so to speak, they-re not match hardened, whereas we are and that could be a key aspect of how the game pans out.”

“There is no point beating around the bush, our A-League results haven-t gone all that well so the ACL is a way of getting a fresh start.”

“It-s something different, something new that can hopefully give the players a little bit of incentive and motivation, not that they shouldn-t be motivated anyway.”

The Reds had their first training session in Uzbekistan yesterday afternoon, which gave them an opportunity to blow the cobwebs out after the long flight and also allow them to continue working on the plan and style of football that Kosmina hopes will undo Bunyodkor.

“We haven-t done anything vigorous or football related since we played last Thursday night, there has been a lot of flying in between, so it was a way of getting some of the heaviness out of their legs and they worked fairly hard,” Kosmina said.

Playing away from home, the Reds are highly likely to go into the game more defensively minded and then counter punch in attack, Kosmina giving an insight into areas he believes the Reds can exploit.

“We think they (Bunyodkor) are probably susceptible on the break - it-s not our natural game so we-ve made a couple of positional changes and it will probably work out alright,” Kosmina said.

On the player availability and selection front, Sergio van Dijk and Francisco Usucar both trained away from the main group but are expected to take part in United-s one hour familiarisation session at JAR Stadium in an effort to prove their fitness.

Kosmina is confident the duo will both come up for the game on Tuesday, the deciding factor to be whether either or both start and just how much time they will play.

“I think they-ll be ok for Tuesday but whether they start remains to be seen,” Kosmina said.

Kick-Off is at 10.30pm ACDT and the match can be seen LIVE on Fox Sports.