Verbeek satisfied with display in win over Knights says Halloran

Fresh from scoring a double in Adelaide United’s 5-2 FFA Cup Round of 32 win over Melbourne Knights, Ben Halloran believes it was a much closer game than perhaps the scoreline suggested.

Along with his brace, Halloran was instrumental in setting up the opening goal of the match which debutant, Al Hassan Toure scored.

But with the Reds 2-0 in front, the hosts halved the deficit with an opportunistic goal, while threatening at times on the counter.  

“It was a tough first-half but I think in the end we probably deserved the win,” Halloran said, who rounded the Knights’ goalkeeper to double the advantage and later sealed the victory with a neat finish.

“I feel like they pushed us up until the 70th minute mark. We gave away a couple of sloppy goals but it’s typical of these games.

“I think the last 20 to 30 minutes we tended to maybe get on top a little bit and you could see the difference a little bit.

“I think the 5-2 (scoreline) maybe wasn’t indicative of the whole game probably for the last 20 minutes we kind of ran away with it.”

Full-time highlights: Melbourne Knights vs Adelaide United

Nathan Konstandopoulos and Riley McGree, netted a goal each after the re-start, giving the Reds a commanding 4-1 lead until the Knights again pegged a goal back.

However, Halloran put the result beyond any doubt ensuring United’s progression to the last 16.

The 27-year-old revealed Head Coach, Gertjan Verbeek, was satisfied with the result in what was his first competitive game in charge of the Club.

“He was pleased, we haven’t really spoken in depth about the game,” he stated.

“We’ll probably analyse it tomorrow when we head to training.

“I think he was pleased with the result but there’s still plenty to work on. It was the first game so it’s not going to be the most polished performance.

“It’s the cup so it’s knockout and I think he was just happy to get the win and move on to the next round.”

Following Wednesday night’s draw, the Reds will travel to Brisbane to face NPL outfit Olympic FC.

Halloran was confident they could get the job done provided they approach the match with the same mindset as their Round of 32 triumph.

“We just have to go into it with the same mentality as we did last night,” he said.

“If we can match their commitment and their aggression then hopefully our quality will shine through.”

Adelaide United's Hyundai A-League 2019/20 home fixtures announced.

The Hyundai A-League draw was also released Thursday morning with Adelaide kicking off the season against Sydney FC at Coopers Stadium – the first of 13 home matches.

Halloran said he was excited to be playing the Sky Blues and said he still harbours aspirations of representing the Socceroos.

“Definitely looking forward to the first round,” the former Fortuna Düsseldorf winger said, who has six international caps.

“Sydney at home is going to be a great game, and you see that if you play well in the A-League then you will get rewarded and play for the national team.

“So it’s definitely something I would like to do again.”