Adelaide United coach, Josep Gombau, said the mid-season break has helped his side recover from a hectic end to 2014 and will serve the Reds well for the remainder of this season, but especially for the game against Newcastle Jets on Saturday.
“Saturday we’ll start the second half of the season and for us it is an important time because we want to try to do a good second half (of the season),” Gombau explained.
“We want to try to be in a good position at the end and try to play in the finals. This is the objective.
“We are ready (for Newcastle). We have had this break, which was good for everybody and we’re returning (to our football) with a clear mentality and we’re refreshed.”
Gombau also stated that he and his players are excited to get back to playing football and reiterated the team’s eagerness to remain close to the top of the A-League ladder, which of course starts this weekend.
“Now we’re excited because we’re in a good position and in the top four and we’re going to try and keep these positions and finish as high as possible in the ladder,” he said.
“And it starts this weekend. If we want to be at the top at the end, we need to win every single game.
“When you play at home you need to try to win and I know the last games we played at home we didn’t play as well as we wanted.
“But we want to play a good game (to win) the three points not only because we need them, but also to win for the fans that are coming to the stadium and we know they also have this feeling that here we are strong.”
The Spaniard also shed light on the current injury situation surrounding the team, but in particular Dylan McGowan, who picked up a knock during the team’s return to training. Gombau explained McGowan will be unavailable for selection this week, although should be fit for our match against Central Coast Mariners on February 7.
“McGowan can’t play tomorrow, he has an injury (to his quad). At the beginning we thought that maybe he could recover (in time) for the game, but in the end it’s too early and so we’ll have other players who can play in this position.
“It’s better that he has the right recovery and then he will be available for the next game.
“The rest of the team is in a good condition and I’m happy for this and it’s a headache for me to decide which players will start.
“When you have all the players (fit) you can decide what you want to do and you can select which will play depending on the opponent and what you want to do for that certain game. It’s easy and much better this way.”
Adelaide United will play Newcastle Jets at Coopers Stadium in Round 15 of the 2014/15 Hyundai A-League season on Saturday, 24 January 2015. Kick off is at 4.30pm ACDT. Click here to purchase tickets.
Saturday, 24 January 2015
Adelaide United v Newcastle Jets
Coopers Stadium, Adelaide
Kick-Off: 4:30 PM (Local) (5:00 PM AEDT)
Referee: Matthew Conger
Assistant Referee 1: Nathan MacDonald
Assistant Referee 2: George Lakrindis
Fourth Official: Rick Schneider
TV Broadcast: Live and exclusive coverage on FOX SPORTS 505 from 5.00pm (AEDT) and Sky Sport 1 (New Zealand)
Radio Broadcast: 891 ABC Adelaide, ABC Local Radio SA, 1233 ABC Newcastle, Grandstand Digital Adelaide, Online/ABC Radio Mobile phone app
Join the conversation on Twitter using the hash-tag #ADLvNEW
Adelaide United squad: 2.Michael MARRONE, 3.Nigel BOOGAARD (c), 4.Dylan McGOWAN, 5.Osama MALIK, 7.PABLO SÁNCHEZ, 8.ISAÍAS, 9.Sergio CIRIO, 10.Marcelo CARRUSCA, 11.Bruce DJITE, 14.Cameron WATSON, 16.Craig GOODWIN, 17.Awer MABIL, 18.Jimmy JEGGO, 20.Paul IZZO (GK), 21.Tarek ELRICH, 22.Fabio FERREIRA, 24.Bruce KAMAU, 30.John HALL (GK) ***two to be omitted***
Unavailable: 1.Eugene GALEKOVIC (international duty), 23.Jordan ELSEY (knee – indefinite)
Newcastle Jets squad: 1.Mark BIRIGHITTI (gk), 2.Scott NEVILLE, 3.Taylor REGAN, 4.Kew JALIENS (c), 5.Ben KANTAROVSKI, 6.Adrian MADASCHI, 8.Zenon CARAVELLA, 9.Joel GRIFFITHS, 11.Andrew HOOLE, 12.Sam GALLAGHER, 13.Edson MONTANO, 14.Billy CELESKI, 16.Jacob PEPPER, 18.Allan WELSH, 19.Mitch COOPER, 20.Ben KENNEDY (gk), 23.David CARNEY, 27.Radovan PAVICEVI ***two to be omitted***
Ins: 3.Taylor REGAN (promoted), 14.Billy CELESKI (returns from injury), 27.Radovan PAVICEVIC (promoted)
Outs: 7.Jeronimo NEUMANN (shoulder – 2-3 weeks), 10.Marcos FLORES (released), 17.James VIRGILI (ankle – 2-3 months)
Unavailable: 15.Josh BARRESI (knee – season)