Adelaide United Youth travel away for Round 22 of the South Australian National Premier League 2018 Season, facing Para Hills Knights at the Paddocks on Saturday.
The Young Reds are filled with confidence coming into their final league game of the season, after coming off last week’s nail-biting win against West Adelaide to secure a maiden finals appearance.
The Reds won 2-1, thanks to a brace from Lachlan Brook in the second half to secure the 3-points, as well as a top six finish for the Reds.
Head coach, Paul Pezos, was pleased with his side’s performance last weekend and was obviously thrilled with a finals place secured.
“I’m very happy, we’ve worked hard and put in the effort all through the season, with some great performances from the boys,” Pezos said.
“Hard work has paid off for the boys and I’m very happy for the club as a whole, with the first finals finish for us.
“That was one of our goals at the beginning of the season, to get into those finals, and we’ve proved we’re good enough through the season."
With Brook the obvious star man on the day, Pezos was also quick to give plaudits to the entire team.
“Lachy scored both goals, but they were two good build-ups that supplied him the ball, so it was an overall good team performance,” he said.
“I felt that they didn’t penetrate us very well on the day and that we were confident and comfortable.
“Of course it’s been challenging, we lost about four or five players for a couple weeks to the first team.”
Pezos was sure to mention the difficult time over the last few weeks as the first-team began pre-season.
Losing several key players, Pezos blooded a group of young reserve team members, who he believed lived up to expectations.
“That’s our role obviously, to meet the demands of the first team, and we’re secondary, but the boys who stepped in have done a good job,” he said.
“They’ve gained a lot of experience and have done a great job until date, putting a lot of younger players in the deep end and that’s why we’re playing finals.”
The Reds now look ahead to this weekend’s fixture against Para Hills having secured a first-ever finals berth in Pezos’ first season in charge.
“It’s going to be another tough game, they’ve still got an opportunity to make playoffs, so they won’t come out lightly,” he stated.
“We have a winning mentality and we want to go into finals with momentum, as well as working on some structures that we can take into this game and finals.
“We’re trying to go in with some momentum, our team is young and full of energy, so none of the boys want a rest.
“They want to get out there and play the game and win, so we’ll go with our strongest line-up and try to take the three-points.”
Adelaide United Youth face Para Hills Knights in Round 22 of the National Premier League 2018 season on, Saturday 4, August at the Paddocks. Kick-off is at 3:00 PM.