Kosmina: Reds still a work in progress

The Reds may have suffered another home defeat but Coach John Kosmina continues to remain positive and firmly believes the team is making inroads.

The Reds may have suffered another home defeat but Coach John Kosmina continues to remain positive and firmly believes the team is making inroads.

Nine games into his second tenure at the club, Kosmina is gradually becoming more entrenched in the role as each week passes by and after a bright start, which saw the Reds take seven of a possible nine points in his first three games, the last fortnight in particular has been anything but a holiday.

Two home losses has the Reds facing an uphill battle with seven games remaining to be playing finals, but while Kosmina concedes last Friday-s defeat to Wellington put another small dent in United-s top six aspirations, he is by no means giving the season away.

“It makes it that little bit more difficult but it-s far from over yet,” Kosmina said of where the Reds sit ion the context of their season following Friday night-s result.

“I look at the bigger picture and look at how we-re playing. Last week against Perth we played some good football but we caved in a little bit and we talked about the mental strength of the players, and last night they showed mental strength, they showed that character, so it is inside them.”

“They-ve got what is needed to go on with it so it-s a matter of us applying as well as we did last night.”

“Last night was a good game of football for us. Statistically we ran over the top of them - we-ve still got to tighten a few things up at the back but they-re fixable problems.”

Compared with the anger and disappointment evident in his post game comments following the loss to Perth the week before, Kosmina was far less disgruntled after the Phoenix game despite the Reds coughing up the lead.

Considering the squad and players he inherited when he took on the coaching job, Kosmina understands there is a wide gap in the experience stakes between his side and the majority of others in the Hyundai A-League.

Kosmina knows how much of a difference experience can make and says it is something that only comes with time and games together, which is what the Wellington Phoenix have in abundance.

“They (Wellington) are a vastly more experienced side than us. Most of that side have played together for three or four seasons…so they know each other, they know each other-s game really well and they-ve been together on the road for a hell of a long time,” Kosmina said.

“In terms of that kind of experience our side is still very young, even though we-ve got some older heads in the place they haven-t been together for a long time so it-s still a learning ‘getting to know you- process.”

“I-m not making any excuses, but having said all that, it-s still part of where we-re at and it-s still a work in progress.”

Without a win in their last six games, results may not be going the Reds- way of late, but Kosmina will keep persisting and providing encouragement, determined to get the best out of this playing group.

“You-ve got to keep emphasising the good things. You-ve got to fix up the things that aren-t so good as well but you just keep focusing on the positives, focusing on how we play, stick to that and it will turn around,” Kosmina said.

“Every week little things have improved incrementally, the football keeps getting better and the first ten minutes again last night was dynamite.”