Verbeek praises rampant second-half display after City rout
Gertjan Verbeek has collected his first piece of silverware with Adelaide United after masterminding his side’s 4-0 FFA Cup Final rout against Melbourne City.
The Dutchman altered his tactics slightly from Sunday’s 2-1 loss against the same opponent and it paid enormous dividends.
Al Hassan Toure starred for the Reds winning the Mark Viduka Medal for best on ground as he opened the scoring.
It was the 19-year-old prodigy’s fifth goal in as many cup matches and sixth overall this season across all competitions.
Verbeek believed his side absorbed too much pressure to start the game before they grew in belief after Toure’s 25th minute angled finish.
“We had a little bit too much respect for Melbourne City in the first 20 minutes,” Verbeek told reporters in the post-match press conference.
“I think the first goal gave us confidence, you try as the coach to talk to the guys to believe because we lost Sunday.
“But I also saw in the second-half we can beat them, if we do a few things better then we can, we’re a dangerous team.
“We played a little more back than last Sunday and I think that helped us in the transition and we scored in the right moments.”
A rampant second-half followed with Ben Halloran, Nikola Mileusnić and Riley McGree all scoring within a 16-minute window to put the result beyond doubt.
Verbeek believed their ruthless approach to begin the second stanza, instead of playing cautious with a slender lead, caught City off guard.
“I think they didn’t expect us that at 1-0 in front we’d play more attacking in the second-half than in the first-half,” he explained.
“Because I was not satisfied about how we pressed.
“… We were very compact and the defence was very good and in transition we were very dangerous.”
The Reds have a short turnaround to get ready for their Hyundai A-League away trip to Newcastle Jets on Saturday.
Verbeek said the squad will be assessed and highlighted the importance of accumulating some points following successive defeats to start the season.
“Friday we’ll see who’s fit enough to join us for Newcastle,” he said.
“And we also have to start getting some points in the competition (Hyundai A-League).”
Adelaide United face Newcastle Jets in Round 3 of the Hyundai A-League 2019/20 season on Saturday, 26 October at McDonald Jones Stadium. Kick-off is at 4.30pm ACDT. Live and Exclusive on Fox Sports, ABC, Kayo Sports and the My Football Live App.